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MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) - Two New York men are accused of selling untraceable firearms known as "ghost guns" to undercover investigators.
State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced a 32-count indictment was unsealed Monday in a Long Island courtroom against Thomas Weber and Antonio Himonitis. Charges include conspiracy, weapons sales and possession. They were arrested June 25.
Each pleaded not guilty in state [background=transparent]Supreme Court[/background] in Riverhead. Himonitis was ordered held on $2 million bond. Weber was held on $1 million bond.
"Ghost guns represent a new, dangerous frontier of illegal firearm trafficking - the creation of homemade, completely untraceable, military-grade firearms," Schneiderman said. "It does not matter if you build it yourself or buy it off the street corner - an illegal gun is an illegal gun, and we will prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law."
Attorney David Levine said Himonitis is looking forward to defending himself against the charges. Weber's lawyer, Christopher Kirby, declined comment.
Prosecutors say the pair ordered unfinished gun parts from different manufacturers across the country. They are accused of modifying the parts and to make at least a dozen "ghost guns." The guns were then sold to undercover investigators.
 

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I love the hysteria over "untraceable" "ghost guns". It is not like guns are typically left next to the murder victims to be traced. I would think they are usually either disposed of and never found or the killers keep them. Either way, I doubt tracing comes into play all that often and with private sales there are plausible gaps in the ownership trail anyway.

Also, I would think it would be easier to deface a serial number than to build a "ghost gun".
 

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Grand Poobah
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Was completing the guns from the unfinished lowers even illegal? The article implies it was, but I don't think so. Selling them without an FFL was illegal in NY but it would also be with factory produced guns.
No idea and we'll probably never know. Between the poor reporting of information in the press these days and the spin the DA puts on it.

One thing I'd bet $ on.
These were not " military-grade firearms,"
 

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Clinger
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Military grade .... That's funny ...In California the libs used consumer protection laws to prevent "cheap and dangerous " ( to the shooter) guns from being sold with out being State tested and certified .... now the libs have a problem with quality military grade parts.... so what do the libs want ( beside taking all guns away ) a mediocre type of middle of the road firearm? Yeah that would make them happy ....
 

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Ok, the only pretty much guaranteed crime committed here is that they did not transfer the rifles through an ffl. Additional crimes may include manufacturing a rifle for profit without ffl, assembling a noncompliant "assault weapon" under unsafe, maybe some standard capacity mags thrown in the mix, etc. Just a few short years ago this entire ordeal could very easily have been perfectly legal. Not supporting these guys, not nearly enough info given, just food for thought. And for anyone unaware, its perfectly legal to build your own firearms, from an 80% receiver or otherwise, as long as they meet all fed, state, and local requirements. CBS probably neglected that in the rush to get this story out, im sure it will be included in the late edition.
 

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When they were originally arrested in June, the authorities claimed that some of the rifles were fully automatic. Schneiderman's press release on the indictments does not mention this so that was probably bs.

Ironically, in the photos at the time of themarrests, it appeared all the magazines they sold were nice, SAFE 10 rounders. Maybe they will get partial credit for following that part of the unSAFE Act.


I wouldn't be surprised if the defendants' lawyers try to argue entrapment. I believe the undercover officers offered them $5,000 a piece for rifles that probably retail for about $1,000 a piece. They could argue that they were enticed by that huge payout to commit a crime they normally wouldn't commit.

That said, if these guys believed they were selling to felons I hope they do 20 years.
 

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Lousy Shot
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Was completing the guns from the unfinished lowers even illegal? The article implies it was, but I don't think so. Selling them without an FFL was illegal in NY but it would also be with factory produced guns.
The DA, AG and the media really don't want to make it too clear what's legal or illegal. That's not what's important. Look, these guys are probably scumbags and they should be locked away, if not thrown away. But they're not what's important either.

What's important is that the authorities and the media not focus too much on laws or crimes or criminals, and focus on the guns. Because guns are bad. M'kay?
 
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