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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Joshua S. Levy, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Monday, February 26, 2024

West Springfield Man Pleads Guilty to Unlawful Possession of Machinegun

BOSTON — A West Springfield man pleaded guilty today in federal court in Springfield to possession of a machinegun. 

Angel Vargas, Jr., 35, pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful possession of a machinegun before U.S. District Judge Mark G. Mastroianni who scheduled sentencing for June 14. Vargas was indicted by a federal grand jury in January 2023.

On Jan. 5, 2023, a search of Vargas’s residence resulted in the recovery of four loaded firearms, including a privately manufactured firearm, or “ghost gun,” with a Glock-style machinegun conversion device – i.e., a “Glock switch” designed to enable a Glock semi-automatic pistol to fire automatically. Vargas’s cell phone was also recovered which contained additional evidence of Vargas’s possession and trafficking of other firearms, including other Glock switches. At the time of Vargas’s arrest, he was on pre-trial release on a Springfield District Court case in which he was charged with various firearms crimes.

Vargas faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and three years of supervised release. Vargas has also agreed to the administrative forfeiture of the firearms, the Glock switch and the ammunition. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. sentencing guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.

Acting U.S. Attorney Joshua S. Levy and James M. Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Boston Field Division made the announcement today. Valuable assistance was provided by the West Springfield Police Department and the Massachusetts State Police. Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven H. Breslow of the Springfield Branch Office is prosecuting the case. 


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