PATERSON − Federal authorities have busted a firearms network that specialized in so-called "ghost guns" − do-it-yourself weapons made from parts purchased through the internet and assembled from online instructions.
Between Dec. 18 and Jan. 25, the group allegedly sold 12 firearms, including 11 ghost guns and a rifle, mostly for $1,200 apiece at locations in Paterson and Passaic, according to a news release issued by U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger on Tuesday.
What the sellers didn't know was that the buyers were three confidential informants and an undercover law enforcement officer working with the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), according to the criminal complaints. Federal agents were making audio and video recordings of the transaction and keeping copies of text messages about the crimes, authorities said.
Ghost guns, formally known as personally made firearms, get their name because of their lack of serial numbers or any other identifying markings. United States Postal Service records show that three of the four suspects arrested in the case receive packages delivered to their homes during the past two months from sellers of gun parts, officials said.
The arrested suspects were two Paterson men, Savion Clybun, 20, and Corey Jenkins Jr., 30, and two 26-year-olds from Jersey City and Bayonne, Julian Santiago and Richard Mullane, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.
They were charged with conspiracy to engage in unlicensed firearms dealing and manufacturing and engaging in unlicensed firearms dealing and manufacturing, including by manufacturing and subsequently selling personally made firearms. Santiago is also charged with transferring a firearm to a felon.
This article originally appeared on NorthJersey.com: NJ ghost gun network broken by federal authorities