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Otterbein man sentenced to 18 months in prison for straw purchase of 12 firearms, with one landing in the hands of a convicted felon

(WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Xavier Wilson, 24, of Otterbein, Indiana, has been sentenced to a year-and-a-half in prison for making a false statement in connection with the purchase of a firearm.

According to court documents, in Feb. 2021, ATF agents received a report from the Lafayette Police Department regarding a possible straw purchaser. A straw purchase scheme is when a person not prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm falsely states to a federally licensed gun dealer that they are purchasing a firearm for themselves, when they know that the gun is actually intended for someone else, frequently someone who is prohibited from purchasing or possessing the firearm themselves.

The individual, later identified as Xavier Wilson, purchased 12 guns from federally-licensed firearms dealers in Marion and Boone Counties within one month. On federal firearms purchase forms, Wilson indicated that he was the actual buyer of the guns and provided an out-of-date address, where he had not lived for two years.

On March 31, 2021, one of the firearms Wilson purchased, a Glock 45 handgun, was recovered by law enforcement officers in Chicago, Illinois, in the hands of a convicted felon. Wilson had purchased that firearm just seven days earlier.

On April 14, 2021, ATF agents interviewed Wilson at his actual residence in Lafayette, Indiana. Wilson admitted that he bought the firearms with the intent to resell them quickly on Discord and to make a profit. Wilson also admitted to providing a false address.

Zachary A. Myers, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana, and Daryl S. McCormick, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), Columbus Field Division made the announcement.

“Illegal gun traffickers flood our streets with firearms and drive the violence plaguing too many of our neighborhoods, and saving lives requires us to stop the flow of crime guns at their source,” said Myers. “This defendant repeatedly lied to obtain firearms and profited by putting them into the hands of people prohibited from legally purchasing them. Now he will pay for his crimes in federal prison. This prosecution demonstrates that our office will work tirelessly with the ATF to identify illegal gun traffickers and hold them accountable.”

The sentence was imposed by U.S. District Court Judge, James P. Hanlon. Judge Hanlon also ordered that Wilson be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for 3 years following his release from federal prison.

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