TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey man faces prison expenses after he bought greater than a dozen kits to make “ghost,” or untraceable, weapons at a Pennsylvania exhibition, the highest legislation enforcement officers from each states mentioned Friday.
New Jersey performing Legal professional Basic Andrew Bruck and Pennsylvania Legal professional Basic Josh Shapiro mentioned William Pillus of Lincoln Park, New Jersey, was indicted on 5 expenses this week, together with second-degree illegal possession of an assault firearm, third-degree buying firearm components to fabricate untraceable firearms, third-degree possession of firearm with out a serial quantity, and two counts of fourth-degree possession of a giant capability ammunition journal.
His girlfriend was additionally charged with one rely of fourth-degree possession of a large-capacity journal.
Ghost weapons are firearms with out serial numbers that can not be traced by authorities.
A message searching for remark was left with the lawyer listed as Pillus’ protection lawyer.
The attorneys normal billed the arrest as a crackdown on ghost weapons, that are unlawful in New Jersey. A Pennsylvania judge in 2020 put a hold on a state police coverage that referred to as on retailers to name the state’s background test system and never merely use the web system for gross sales of ghost weapons.
“Our message to gun traffickers is obvious: if you happen to deliver unlawful firearms into our state, we’ll prosecute you to the fullest extent of the legislation,” Bruck mentioned. “We’re dedicated to shutting down the pipeline of unlawful firearms into New Jersey, particularly the untraceable ‘ghost weapons’ which are rapidly turning into a favourite of criminals.”
Shapiro, who’s running for governor in Pennsylvania subsequent yr, requested throughout a information convention why Pennsylvania lawmakers have not cracked down like New Jersey has.
“This case additionally underscores the necessity for brand new legal guidelines, each on the federal stage and particularly in Pennsylvania, to cease the circulation of ghost weapons into the fingers of individuals trying to do hurt in our communities,” he mentioned.
Pillus’ case stems from a September go to to an Allentown, Pennsylvania, gun present the place he purchased the 13 handgun kits, in keeping with officers. Authorities mentioned they tracked him to his Morris County, New Jersey, residence the place in addition they confiscated an AR-15-style rifle with out serial numbers, 13 9-milimeter handgun kits, two 30-round AR-15 magazines, together with handwritten handgun meeting directions and firearm meeting instruments, amongst different issues.
Shapiro credited the cooperative relationship between legislation enforcement in each states for the fees on this case.
New Jersey has tightened its already strict gun legal guidelines below Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, who’s operating for reelection this yr.
He is promised more gun safety legislation if reelected. Among the many legal guidelines Murphy signed in his first time period embrace a discount within the measurement of magazines from 15 rounds to 10 rounds, and a measure that made it against the law to move, ship, promote or get rid of ghost weapons within the state.
The indictment comes after a 2020, partnership between the states to halt interstate gun trafficking and remedy gun crimes, often called the “PA/NJ Gun Trafficking Initiative.”
It additionally comes simply simply weeks after the governors of four northeastern states — Connecticut, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania — agreed to alternate gun crime information to be used by legislation enforcement.
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