Connecticut Man Charged In Manhattan For Trafficking “Ghost”

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Damian Williams, the United States Legal professional for the Southern District of New York, and John B. DeVito, Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Area Division of the Bureau of Liquor, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (“ATF”), introduced that MELVIN BURROUGHS was billed in a superseding indictment with conspiring to traffic firearms, trafficking firearms, and currently being a felon in possession of ammunition.

U.S. Lawyer Damian Williams claimed: “As alleged, the defendant—a convicted felon—was in the business of building and promoting untraceable ‘ghost guns.’  Many thanks to our law enforcement associates, his hazardous ghost gun business enterprise has been shut down.”

ATF New York Exclusive Agent-in-Demand John B. DeVito said:  “ATF has no bigger priority than stopping the stream of unlawful guns of any type. This scenario sends a clear message to all those who look for to generate ghost guns for the criminal market. The NYC Crime Gun Intelligence enables legislation enforcement to discover styles, qualified prospects, and opportunity suspects this kind of as in this scenario in buy to make our communities safer.   Many thanks to the collaboration with the NYPD Key Situation Field Intelligence Crew, NYSP and Ansonia CT Law enforcement Division for their tough get the job done.”

According to the allegations in the Superseding Indictment[1] unsealed today in Manhattan federal court and in other public court paperwork:

From approximately 2019 through close to January 2022, BURROUGHS procured the parts for “ghost guns,” assembled the components into completed firearms, and then illegally marketed the working and done firearms. 

Dependent on critique of surveillance video capturing the celebration from various angles, on March 14, 2021, BURROUGHS exited his property in Ansonia, Connecticut with a handgun and—in wide daylight—discharged five rounds at two males who experienced approached his residence. 

The Ansonia Police Division searched BURROUGHS’s household the up coming day.  In accordance to police studies and pictures documenting the look for, regulation enforcement officers located two done Glock-fashion privately created firearms (frequently regarded as “ghost guns”), and a .50-caliber Desert Eagle pistol that experienced been noted stolen in Georgia.  Law enforcement officers also recovered a personalized-designed pink and black AR-15-design and style rifle with the text “SUU WHOOP” inscribed on it.  “Suu whoop” is a gang phone of the Bloods street gang, and pink is the color of the Bloods avenue gang.  A photograph of the rifle is underneath:


Through the look for of BURROUGHS’s home, and in addition to the four firearms explained above, regulation enforcement officers also recovered substantial quantities of ammunition, numerous gun elements and applications for building ghost guns, and a flamethrower. 

In connection with the shooting and look for of his residence, BURROUGHS was billed in Excellent Courtroom of Connecticut – Ansonia-Milford Judicial District in Milford, Connecticut with Connecticut point out offenses of threatening in the initial degree, reckless endangerment in the first diploma, felony mischief in the third degree, unlawful discharge of a firearm, criminal use of a weapon, legal possession of a firearm or ammunition, and try to dedicate to start with degree assault.  BURROUGHS was introduced on bail situations.  

On January 8, 2022, BURROUGHS was arrested in Westchester County, New York with kits to develop 17 ghost guns, a concluded decreased receiver[2] for an AR-15 rifle, 15 prolonged journals, and an 18-inch machete.  A photograph of the products seized from BURROUGHS on January 8, 2022 is below:

Soon after BURROUGHS was arrested on January 8, 2022, regulation enforcement agents searched a number of cellphones belonging to BURROUGHS pursuant to research warrants.  Evidence on individuals cellphones, like text message communications, videos, and photographs, establishes that BURROUGHS has been unlawfully offering firearms considering the fact that roughly 2019.  In distinct, the proof displays that BURROUGHS’s gun trafficking organization consists of getting ghost gun areas on the net or at gun shows, building the ghost guns at his home, and then offering the concluded firearms.  Just one of BURROUGHS’s cellphones contained a photograph, below, of 15 ghost gun kits that BURROUGHS bought in approximately February 2021. 

BURROUGHS, 35, of Ansonia, Connecticut, is billed with: (1) a person depend of conspiracy to targeted traffic firearms, which carries a optimum sentence of five decades in jail, (2) one particular count of trafficking firearms, which carries a utmost sentence of ten many years in jail, and (3) one rely of being a felon in possession of ammunition.  The highest potential sentences in this circumstance are prescribed by Congress and are presented right here for informational uses only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be established by the decide.

Mr. Williams praised the superb investigative do the job of the ATF.  Mr. Williams also thanked the New York Metropolis Police Office, the Ansonia Police Section, the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office environment, the Connecticut Office environment of the State’s Attorney for Ansonia-Milford, and the United States Attorney’s Place of work for the District of Connecticut for their assistance in the circumstance.

The case is becoming taken care of by the Office’s Narcotics Unit.  Assistant United States Attorney Kevin Mead is in cost of the prosecution.

The costs in the Superseding Indictment are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed harmless except and right until demonstrated guilty.


[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the textual content of the Superseding Indictment and other assertions in community court files, and the descriptions of those paperwork set forth in this release constitute only allegations, and each individual reality described ought to be dealt with as an allegation.

[2] A “lower receiver” or “frame” is the base section of a firearm and the primary unit of a firearm, which, in an AR-15 rifle, houses areas linked to the trigger, magazine, and hammer.

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