Attleboro man awaits sentencing for gun trafficking conviction

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By Max Bowen-max.bowen@northstarreporter.com

 

An Attleboro man could face up to 15 years for gun trafficking charges.

 

Richard Philippe, 42, was convicted on Dec. 17 following a four-day jury trial of transporting firearms into Massachusetts from Georgia without a license and being a felon in possession of ammunition. U.S. District Court Chief Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV scheduled sentencing for April 4, 2022. Philippe was indicted in September 2019.

 

According to information sent by the District Attorney’s office, between April and June 2019, Philippe purchased dozens of handguns from an unlicensed straw purchaser in Georgia. Philippe returned with the guns to a warehouse in Taunton, where they were sold for cash. Philippe has a prior felony firearms conviction in Rhode Island, and had neither the lawful ability to possess firearms or ammunition, nor a federal license to deal in firearms.

 

The investigation arose following a July 2019 undercover purchase of firearms from a long-time Brockton drug dealer, who had purchased more than a dozen firearms from Philippe and had been selling them into criminal commerce on the South Shore. This led to a search of a warehouse in Taunton owned by Philippe, which revealed the firearm trafficking. The weapons were traced back to multiple purchases by Philippe’s associate from a pawn shop in Georgia, which specialized in selling low-cost handguns.

 

The charge of possessing ammunition after being convicted of a felony provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. The charge of transportation and receipt of firearms acquired outside of state of residency provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based on the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

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