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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Southern District of Texas

For Immediate Release

November 30, 2011

Kenneth Magidson, United States Attorney

Contact: Angela Dodge, Public Information Officer
(713) 567-9388

Three Area Men Land in Federal Prison for Straw Purchasing Scheme

McALLEN, Texas – Three Rio Grande Valley men will be serving prison terms for falsifying information on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Form 4473, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today.

United States District Judge Randy Crane sentenced Miguel Gomez, 20, of Weslaco, Texas; Arturo Jilpas, 23, of Mercedes, Texas; and Daniel Infante DeLeon III, 24, of Donna, Texas, to 37 months, 12 months and one day, and 37 months of imprisonment, respectively. Each sentence will be followed by a three-year-term of supervised release. All three previously pleaded guilty to the federal firearm violation of Title 18 United States Code Section 924(a)(1)(A) for making false statements in relation to the purchase of firearms, an offense commonly referred to as straw purchasing. DeLeon was sentenced today, while Gomez and Jilpas were sentenced on Aug. 29, 2011, and July 19, 2011, respectively.

The investigation revealed that they had purchased multiple highly trafficked firearms and that one of the firearms purchased by DeLeon had been recovered in Mexico. All three individuals were interviewed and it was determined that they had straw purchased a total of 13 firearms for the same recruiter. The recruiter would provide each of the purchasers with money and direct them as to where to go and which firearm to purchase. After the firearm was purchased and delivered to the recruiter, the purchaser was then paid for having made a straw purchase.

The case was investigated was by ATF and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Steven Schammel.