District Court Judge Curtis V. Gomez on Thursday sentenced Tequan Joseph, 23, to 34 months in prison and three years of supervised release for conspiracy to ship firearms with obliterated serial numbers and other charges, U.S. Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe announced.
Gomez ordered Joseph to pay a $300 special assessment and to perform 400 hours of community service.
On Oct. 26 Joseph pleaded guilty to conspiracy to ship firearms with obliterated serial numbers, unlawful transportation of those firearms, and to a Florida charge of false statements.
According to the plea agreement filed with the court, between Aug. 6, 2013, and Oct. 7, 2013, Joseph conspired with other individuals to mail two firearms with obliterated serial numbers from Jacksonville, Fla., to St. Thomas. A total of six firearms were shipped and recovered during that period. The investigation revealed that Joseph had bought all six guns from a licensed firearms dealer in Jacksonville.
Joseph is not a federally licensed firearms dealer and is not authorized to possess the firearms in the Virgin Islands.
“Trafficking in firearms is the first step in the cycle of violence that’s plaguing our communities,” said Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives special agent in-charge Carlos A. Canino. “We stand with our law enforcement partners to combat violent gun crime and those who want to destroy our communities.”
The case was investigated by ATF and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sigrid M. Tejo-Sprotte.