For Immediate Release
Tulsa Man Pleads Guilty to Trafficking Firearms in Exchange for Distribution Amounts of High-grade Marijuana
A Tulsa gang member pleaded guilty for conspiring with others to collect firearms and exchange them for marijuana to sell on the black market, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson.
Shelvon Tyrone Williams, 27, pleaded guilty Thursday, July 15, to firearms conspiracy and will be sentenced Nov. 18, 2021.
In his plea agreement, Williams admitted that from November 2018 to March 2020, he collected and transported firearms from Oklahoma to northern California in exchange for distribution amounts of high-grade marijuana. Williams then sold the marijuana in the Northern District of Oklahoma.
“Shelvon Williams and his coconspirators furthered their illegal marijuana distribution operation by putting firearms into the hands of other dangerous criminals. The trafficking of firearms fuels violent crime and places those living in communities across our nation at risk,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson. “The Justice Department is focused on preventing and disrupting violent crime. My office will work alongside our local, state, federal, and tribal partners to vigorously prosecute the criminal trafficking of firearms.”
On March 4, 2020, the U.S. Attorney’s Office charged Williams and five others for their involvement in the firearms conspiracy and drug conspiracy. Williams and other defendants are members of the Squeeze Team, a violent street gang made up of various members affiliated with the Bloods, Neighborhood Crips, and 5-tre Crips.
According to the indictment, the conspirators concealed the firearms in backpacks, duffel bags, and suitcases and transported them in cars and buses to individuals in California. The defendants purchased bus tickets with cash using false names to help conceal their crimes. In exchange for each handgun they delivered to California, the defendants received one to two pounds of high-grade marijuana shipped through the U.S. Postal Service. Conspirators in California shipped the packages of marijuana to a specific geographical region in Tulsa where U.S. Postal Service employee and codefendant, Whitney D’ron Clark, retrieved the packages. She then delivered the packages to other conspirators who re-packaged the marijuana for sale in northeastern Oklahoma.
Codefendants Brian Lee Thomas, Whitney D’ron Clark, and Kenyante Hampton previously pleaded guilty to drug conspiracy. Also pleading guilty to firearms conspiracy was codefendant Sheldon Tyrone Christopher Williams Jr.
“ATF and our partners are committed to stopping the illegal flow of firearms across the United States. Mr. Williams and his partners’ greed put the safety of Oklahomans and Californians at risk. They were living the high life for a while, but the law will always catch up with you. I applaud the efforts of all the agencies involved in this significant investigation” stated ATF Dallas Field Division Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey C. Boshek II.
This prosecution was a part of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force Operation Squeezed Out. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.
The Tulsa Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel-lyn A. McCormick prosecuted the case. AUSA McCormick serves as the lead attorney for the U.S. Attorney’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces.