December 7, 2022

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Mexican resident convicted for trafficking firearms under new law

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LAREDO, Texas – A 25-year-old U.S. citizen residing in Mexico has pleaded guilty to trafficking handguns into Mexico under the Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act, announced U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Said Isaac Hernandez admitted to one count  of trafficking firearms and is the first person believed to be convicted under the new law.

The Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act is part of the broader Safer Communities Act, passed June 25.

On July 11, authorities apprehended Hernandez while he was traveling south on U.S. Interstate 35 towards the port of entry in Laredo. At the time of his arrest, they discovered 17 firearms hidden in his car.

Hernandez had been the subject of an investigation related to the purchasing of a large number of firearms and transporting them to Mexico. Between Jan. 21, 2020, and July 11, Hernandez purchased a total of 231 handguns in calibers of 9mm, .380 and .22. 

U.S. District Judge Marina Garcia Marmolejo accepted the plea and will set sentencing at a later date. At that time, Hernandez faces up to 15 years in federal prison. He has been and will remain in custody pending that hearing.

The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Makens is prosecuting the case.

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