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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Southern District of New York
Damian Williams, United States Attorney
www.justice.gov/usao-sdny
For Immediate Release
Friday, July 15, 2022

Bronx Woman Charged With Trafficking 20 Firearms

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, John DeVito, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, New York Field Division (ATF), and Keechant L. Sewell, Police Commissioner for the City of New York (NYPD), announced today that BRANDY ARIAS was charged with firearms trafficking and traveling interstate with intent to engage in firearms trafficking, in connection with her illegally selling firearms in the Bronx, New York.  ARIAS was arrested yesterday and will be presented today before Magistrate Judge James L. Cott in Manhattan federal court.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said:  “As alleged, Brandy Arias was in the business of illegally selling guns on the streets of New York City.  Because of the efforts of our law enforcement partners in this investigation, we have taken twenty guns off the streets and prevented more from coming to New York City from another state.  Arias’s arrest and prosecution should send a message to anyone attempting to illegally traffick guns in our City that they will be found and prosecuted.”

ATF Special Agent-in-Charge John DeVito said:  “This arrest highlights ATF’s mission to stop the flow of illegal firearms into our communities.  We will continue to partner with others to disrupt the shooting cycle and to keep people safe.  Special thanks to the NYPD’s 46th Field Intelligence Unit for their partnership and commitment to this case.”

NYPD Commissioner Keechant L. Sewell said:  “Stopping the flow of illegal guns into New York City is at the forefront of our public-safety mission.  The NYPD and our law-enforcement partners are sending a clear and definitive message: If you traffic in these deadly weapons, you will be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. That is the promise we made to the people we serve, and we will never relent in our fight against gun violence. I want to thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the ATF’s New York Field Division, and all of the investigators who worked on this important case.”

According to the allegations contained in the Complaint filed in court today[1]:

From about March 2022 to July 2022, BRANDY ARIAS illegally sold twenty firearms, as well as ammunition and magazines, to an undercover law enforcement officer (the “UC”) in the Bronx, New York.  These sales occurred on eight different occasions, including in the middle of the day near a residential building and outside of a fast-food restaurant. 

As part of the scheme, in or about June 2022 and July 2022, ARIAS traveled between New York and Florida for the purpose of obtaining firearms to illegally resell in New York.  On at least two occasions shortly after traveling to Florida, ARIAS sold firearms to the UC in the Bronx.

On July 14, 2022, ARIAS met the UC outside of a fast-food restaurant in the Bronx with the intent to sell the UC an additional firearm.  At that time, ARIAS was arrested.

*                *                *

BRANDY ARIAS, 21, of the Bronx, New York is charged with one count of firearms trafficking, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, and one count of interstate travel with intent to engage in firearms trafficking, which carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison. 

The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.

Mr. Williams praised the outstanding work of the ATF and the NYPD in this investigation.

This case is being handled by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit.  Assistant United States Attorneys Ni Qian and Madison Reddick Smyser are in charge of the prosecution.

The charges contained in the Complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Complaint and the description of the Complaint set forth in this release constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.

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