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Man whose gun buys led to homicides gets 3 years in prison

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Posted at 5:10 PM, Jan 23, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-23 17:10:28-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A man who purchased more than 40 guns and then flipped some to felons who used them in homicides and other crimes was sentenced to three years in federal prison Monday.

The guns were traced to the fatal shooting of a 2-year-old child near Grand Rapids a year ago and a homicide in Flint in 2021, prosecutors said.

“Straw purchasing and gun trafficking drive a dangerous black market for firearms,” said Mark Totten, the U.S. attorney in western Michigan.

Jerreil Martin was accused of purchasing 45 guns. He charged his customers $50 to $100 when he lied on forms saying he was buying them for himself, investigators said.

Martin “knew that his customers were not able to buy guns for themselves,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Erin Lane said in a court filing. “He also knew some of his customers were reselling guns to other people. This did not deter him.

“The whereabouts of almost all the guns that the defendant straw-purchased and trafficked remains unknown,” Lane said.

Martin, who pleaded guilty to making false statements during gun purchases, was sentenced to 37 months in prison.

“I regret it all from the beginning to the end,” Martin said in a letter to U.S. District Judge Robert Jonker.