Friday, February 29, 2008

Big Gun Bust in West Tennessee

Feds indict 23 for illegal gun sales

A three-year multi-agency investigation has led to the indictments of 23 illegal gun dealers and the seizure of some 500 handguns, rifles and sawed-off shotguns, federal authorities announced this morning in Memphis.

UPDATE (sorta): From comments over at the Commercial Appeal:

We are not listing the names of the indicted until the authorities can give us more detailed information about their identities. They've only given us the first and last names -- no middle names or initials, no ages, no addresses or towns. Say John Harris was indicted, for example. There are several John Harrises in the phone book, but you wouldn't be able to tell if it's the guy down the street or someone in Millington or Collierville. We've asked for more detailed information, but the authorities say the ages and addresses are not readily available. When we get it, we'll publish it.

Jeni Donlon

Deputy Metro Editor

So, at least we know... something.


The investigation was led by the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and involved 18 other law enforcement agents throughout West Tennessee.

The other 22 people indicted are: Ronnie Breeden, 53, of Waynesboro, Tenn., Barry Chance, 62, of McEwen, Tenn., George Conley, 74, of Holladay, Tenn., Jerry Copeland, 65, of Waverly, Tenn., Bill Eifert, 71, of Baldwyn, Miss., Wayne Ganus, 66, of Adamsville, Tenn., John Richard ‘Rickey’ Goode, 61, of Buena Vista, Tenn., Larry Goode, 54, of Trezevant, Tenn., Benny Harris, 72, of Paris, Tenn., Bobby Hedge, 68, of Holladay, Donald Hooks, 72, of Dover, Tenn., Bruce Hutton, 47, of Savannah, Tenn., Oscar Lee Jones, 59, of Walnut, Miss., Paul Middleton, 70, of Parsons, Tenn., Hubert Norfleet, 67, of Dixon, Tenn., Ovan Owens, 72, of Booneville, Miss., Robert Joe Rich, 80, of Waynesboro, Donald Robison, 70, of Huntingdon, Tenn., Thomas Rorie, 75, of Corinth, Miss., Herman Rye, 73, of McEwen, Joseph Dean Smith, 65, of Bald Knob, Ark., and Jackie Weathers, 70 of Corinth.

Hmm, lots of really old people. Only one younger than me. Wonder what that's all about?

On a totally unrelated note: The only Klan rally I ever saw was back in the 70's, when I was moving my dad's stuff from Memphis to Corinth....

Wonder how much more we'll hear on this?


Bob S. said...

It will be interesting to see how many of these "dealers" have an FFL and how many are just reselling guns illegally.

The article only mention one name, who doesn't have an FFL but does have a connection with law enforcement.

Rustmeister said...

Yeah, I might pop up to my local Merchant of Death today and see what's shaking.

Laughingdog said...

"It will be interesting to see how many of these "dealers" have an FFL and how many are just reselling guns illegally."

Does TN not allow private citizens to sell off their firearms if they decide they don't want some of them? In Virginia, it's perfectly legal for me to sell any of the firearms that I own, as long as I don't sell them to someone who I know to be a prohibited person.

Rustmeister said...

Yes, person to person sales are legal, which is another thing that makes this interesting.

Still waiting for more.

Anonymous said...

Look at the ages. The average age is 64. This is another ATF dog & pony show to make it look like they're actually doing something.

Kristopher said...

Betcha they were private party sales trolled at gunshows ... an ATF informant either pretending to be an out of state buyer, or the informants sold rifles to folks with out of state plates in the parking lot.

Age of the arrestees makes it look like the ATF informants were looking for folks that would make the mistake of trusting them.