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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

November 3, 2010

A. Brian Albritton, United States Attorney

Contact: Amy Filjones
(813) 274-6171
(813) 274-6300 (fax)

Orlando Armed Career Criminal Sentenced to More Than 15 Years in Federal Prison

Orlando, Florida — U.S. Attorney Robert E. O’Neill announces that U.S. District Judge Mary S. Scriven today sentenced Aralius Tremaine Gandy (age 28, of Orlando) to fifteen years and eight months in federal prison for possession of a firearm and ammunition by a prohibited person (convicted felon). The court also ordered Gandy to forfeit the firearms and ammunition involved in the crime. Gandy previously had entered a guilty plea on March 1, 2010.

According to court documents, on April 30, 2009, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office attempted a controlled delivery of a parcel containing marijuana that was addressed to Gandy's apartment. When Gandy and his roommates answered the door, the agents immediately smelled the odor of burning marijuana coming from inside of the apartment. After obtaining a search warrant, the agents discovered a loaded .22 caliber rifle under Gandy's bedroom mattress, a loaded 9mm semi-automatic pistol underneath the living room sofa, and three boxes of .22 caliber ammunition on the living room table. A check of the serial numbers on the firearms revealed that both had been stolen two weeks earlier during the burglary of a federally licensed firearms dealer, TDK Tactical, Inc., in Apopka, Florida. In addition to the firearms and ammunition, agents recovered marijuana, cocaine and drug paraphernalia from the apartment.

After waiving his constitutional rights, Gandy admitted that the two firearms belonged to him and that he had traded $200 worth of crack cocaine for them approximately two weeks earlier. Gandy, however, is a previously convicted felon who is prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition under federal law. In fact, Gandy's extensive prior criminal convictions for drug distribution qualified him for an enhanced sentence as an Armed Career Criminal in federal court.

This is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods program -a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy led by ATF. United States Attorney Robert E. O’Neill, along with Virginia O’Brien, Special Agent in Charge, ATF Tampa Field Division, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.

This case was investigated by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives ("ATF"). It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Robert E. Bodnar, Jr.