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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Montana
Jesse Laslovich, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Illegal Export of Firearms to Mexico Sends Bozeman Man to Prison for Three Years

MISSOULA — A Bozeman man who admitted to illegally exporting firearms he bought in Montana and sold to individuals in Mexico was sentenced today to three years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said.

The defendant, Cristyan Jose Gonzalez-Carrillo, 37, pleaded guilty to illegal export in October 2023.

U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen presided.

“Today’s prison sentence puts this defendant out of the illegal business of buying guns in Montana and taking them to Mexico to sell. Firearms trafficking fuels violence on both sides of the border, and we remain committed here in Montana to investigating and prosecuting those who violate federal firearms laws,” U.S. Attorney Laslovich said.

"Illegal firearms trafficking fuels the cartels' capacity to carry out violent crimes domestically and internationally," said ATF Special Agent in Charge Brent Beavers. "We will continue to aggressively target traffickers alongside our partners while leveraging all of our available resources."

The government alleged in court documents that in July 2020, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) received information that Gonzalez-Carrillo was involved in illegally trafficking firearms from Montana to Mexico. An investigation determined that from February 2020 to May 2020, Gonzalez-Carrillo purchased approximately 31 handguns. Law enforcement executed a search warrant at Gonzalez-Carrillo’s residence in July 2020 and recovered firearms and ammunition, including semi-automatic handguns and AR style rifles, including a firearm with an illegal foregrip. In addition, agents recovered receipts from multiple stores in Montana for the purchase of firearms from February 2020 to June 2020. Investigators also reviewed Gonzalez-Carrillo’s vehicle plate records, which showed multiple border crossings at San Ysidro, California, from April 2020 to June 2020. Investigators further learned that Gonzalez-Carrillo purchased and advertised firearms for sale on the platform WhatsApp and sold firearms to individuals in Mexico.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Tara J. Elliott prosecuted the case. The ATF conducted the investigation.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.



Clair J. Howard

Public Affairs Officer


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