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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Eastern District of California

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Benjamin B. Wagner, United States Attorney

Contact: Lauren Horwood, Public Information Officer
(916) 554-2706

Bakersfield Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Firearms Offenses

FRESNO, Calif. — United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced that Gabriel Gonzalez, 22, of Bakersfield, pleaded guilty on Monday to stealing nine firearms while they were being shipped interstate by United Parcel Service Inc.

According to court documents, between November 2010 and February 2011, while a UPS employee, Gonzalez stole nine firearms that were in transit to federal firearms licensees who had ordered them. Gonzalez stole the firearms while they were in a trailer designated for collect on delivery (c.o.d.) packages at UPS in Bakersfield by opening boxes, removing the firearms, and then resealing the boxes so that they would reach their final destination. The federal firearms licensees reported the thefts. Law enforcement officers recovered all of the firearms except one.

In February 2011, Gonzalez had the following stolen firearms at his residence:

  • • Sig Sauer .40–caliber semi–automatic pistol,
  • • Kimber Eclipse Pro II .45–caliber semi–automatic pistol,
  • • Smith & Wesson .40–caliber semi–automatic pistol, model SW40VE,
  • • Smith & Wesson .40–caliber semi–automatic pistol, model SW40VE, and
  • • Smith & Wesson .380–caliber semi–automatic pistol, model bodyguard.

Gonzalez gave the following stolen firearms to his friends:

  • • Glock .45–caliber semi–automatic pistol, model G30,
  • • Smith & Wesson .40–caliber semi–automatic pistol,
  • • Kahr 9 mm semi–automatic pistol, and
  • • Kimber .40–caliber semi–automatic pistol, model Ultra Carry II.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Bakersfield Police Department, and the Kern County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Kimberly A. Sanchez is prosecuting the case.

Gonzalez is scheduled to be sentenced by United States District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill on May 7, 2012. The maximum statutory penalty for each charge is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 in fine. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.