DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Southern District of California

For Immediate Release

Friday, February 18, 2022
Randy Grossman
, United States Attorney
Contact: Alicia P. Williams

San Diego Man Indicted for Sale of Ghost Guns, Possession of Homemade Machine Gun, and Distribution of Fentanyl

SAN DIEGO – Gavin Michael Adcock of San Diego appeared in federal court today in connection with a grand jury indictment charging him with the sale of firearms without a license, possession of a machine gun, and distribution of fentanyl.

An affidavit in support of a warrant to search of Adcock’s residence outlined the investigation that started in July 2021 when a San Diego Police Department detective came across Adcock on the popular mobile marketplace OfferUp. Adcock was offering to sell unfinished handgun lowers, commonly referred to as “80% lowers.” According to the affidavit, Adcock told the detective, who posed as a customer, that he had completed firearms for sale as well.

According to the affidavit, Adcock and the detective began communicating about the purchase of firearms. The San Diego Police Department then partnered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to further investigate Adcock’s alleged firearms trafficking activities. Through four undercover purchases between November 2021 and January 2022, ATF purchased eight firearms, ammunition, and 61 fentanyl pills from Adcock, the affidavit said.

Of the eight firearms, seven were determined to be “privately manufactured firearms,” also known as PMFs or ghost guns. One of the PMFs was determined to be a machine gun and another was an AR-15-style firearm, both of which Adcock claimed he manufactured himself.  

In addition, during Adcock’s arrest on February 17, 2022, agents seized an additional firearm and suspected fentanyl pills.

“This case is a good example of the commitment by the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our law enforcement agency partners to combat the scourge of fentanyl and illegal firearm trafficking,” said U.S. Attorney Randy Grossman.  Grossman thanked the prosecution team and investigating agencies for their excellent work on this case.

“Over the past few years Southern California has seen an increase in individuals making firearms and selling them without a license,” said ATF Los Angeles Field Division Special Agent in Charge Monique Villegas. “These firearms are oftentimes being sold to individuals that are prohibited from possessing guns. This illegal activity will not be tolerated. ATF will aggressively continue to partner with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to target these traffickers.”

“I would like to thank our law enforcement partners for working with SDPD's Ghost Gun Apprehension Team," said San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit. "Curbing illegal gun trafficking in our neighborhoods remains a priority for our department.”

The next court date is scheduled for February 24, 2022.

This case is the result of ongoing efforts by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, ATF and the San Diego Police Department to investigate and prosecute the trafficking of firearms – ghost guns in particular – and the distribution of dangerous illegal drugs, such as fentanyl.

DEFENDANT                                                Case Number 22cr0313-TWR                                            

Gavin Michael Adcock                                   Age: 20                                   San Diego, CA


Dealing Firearms without a License – Title 18, United States Code, § 922(a)(1)(A)

Maximum penalty: Five years in prison and $250,000 fine

Possession of a Machinegun – Title 18, United States Code, § 922(o)

Maximum penalty: Ten years in prison and $250,000 fine

Distribution of Fentanyl – Title 21, United States Code, § 841(a)(1)

Maximum penalty: Twenty years in prison and $1 million fine


Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

San Diego Police Department

*The charges and allegations contained in an indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.


Los Angeles Field Division