Criminal Justice News

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Man Sentenced to Five Years in Prison for Trafficking Firearms to Guyana



ATLANTA - Jermine T. Prosper was sentenced to five years in prison for smuggling and trafficking approximately 50 firearms to Guyana during a two-year period.  Prosper legally purchased the firearms in the Atlanta area with the intention of smuggling the guns to Guyana and later selling them there.

“Prosper smuggled the firearms he purchased in Atlanta to his home country of Guyana, knowing that those weapons would be sold on the streets,” said U. S. Attorney John Horn.  “His greed mattered more than the danger these firearms posed to the citizens of Guyana.  This successful prosecution reflects federal law enforcement’s dedication to combating illegal firearms smuggling, whether here or abroad.”   

“Criminals must understand that there are serious repercussions for illegal trafficking of firearms.  ATF and our law enforcement partners will contribute all necessary time and effort to ensure that these criminals are brought to justice,” said Special Agent in Charge Wayne Dixie.

“Identifying and stopping the Illegal exportation of weapons is one of HSI's highest priorities to stem the flow of violence by criminal networks,” said ICE Homeland Security Investigations Atlanta Special Agent in Charge Nick S. Annan. “This case illustrates the excellent collaborative partnership between HSI and ATF working together to achieve a common goal.”

According to U.S. Attorney Horn, the charges and other information presented in court: Between October 2013 and November 2015, Prosper, a lawful permanent U.S. resident, purchased over 50 firearms from two local federal firearms licensees, including 34 nine millimeter pistols, eight .380 caliber pistols and six .25 caliber pistols.  Prosper subsequently hid the firearms in shipping barrels and then smuggled them to Guyana where an unknown associate sold them on the streets.

In early 2016, Prosper sold multiple firearms to a fellow Guyanese national who intended to ship them to Guyana. Because Prosper had successfully smuggled firearms from the United States, he offered to smuggle the firearms to Guyana on that person’s behalf.  During their final transaction in April 2016, Prosper sold four additional firearms to this Guyanese national.  Prior to delivering the firearms, Prosper obliterated the serial numbers on the weapons so they would not be traced back to him.

Jermine T. Prosper, 39, of Conyers, Georgia, was sentenced to five years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release.  Prosper was convicted for violating Title 18, United States Code, §§ 922(a)(1)(A) and 923(a); and for violating Title 18, United States Code, § 924 (a)(1)(A) on February 2, 2017, after he pleaded guilty.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.

Assistant United States Attorneys Tracia M. King and Phyllis Clerk prosecuted the case.

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