(Beaumont, TX) United States Attorney John M. Bales announced today that a Humble, Texas man was sentenced for his role in the sale of guns stolen from the Cleveland Police Department in the Eastern District of Texas.
Pursuant a previously filed plea agreement, Gary Lee, 54, of Humble, Texas was sentenced to two years probation today during an appearance before United States District Judge Thad Heartfield. In addition to his term of probation, Lee also must serve 120 days home confinement. An information was filed April 26, 2010, charging Lee with misprision of a felony. Lee pleaded guilty to the one count charge on May 19, 2010.
According to information presented in Court, beginning sometime in 2005, Lee, who is the proprietor of Sportsman’s Outlet and Gun Range in Humble, Texas, entered in to a barter arrangement with Liberty County Sheriff’s Office Captain Harry Kelley. In a separate indictment, Kelley is accused of stealing thousands of rounds of ammunition and hundreds of guns belonging to the Cleveland Police Department, which he in turn bartered, without further payment for the City of Cleveland, to Lee. In exchange, Lee then provided scores of other new firearms that Kelley then resold under his Federal Firearms License. Lee knew that the ammunition and firearms he received from Kelley were stolen. Lee took affirmative steps to conceal his receipt of the contraband items, and failed to notify law enforcement of the scheme and Kelley’s possession of the stolen items until he was later confronted by law enforcement.
As part of his sentence, Lee was also ordered to surrender his Federal Firearms License and his Texas Peace Officer’s License; divestiture of Sportsman’s Outlet Gun Store; and he is precluded from deriving any income from the sale of firearms.
United States Attorney John M. Bales said "Mr. Lee’s involvement with Harry Kelley in this scheme not only cost the City of Cleveland thousands of dollars, it contributed to what is an unacceptable blemish on the integrity of law enforcement in Liberty County. The United States Attorney’s Office will take every conceivable step to address and bring to light corrupt police activity. I congratulate the agents and rangers working on this very important matter and we look forward presenting all of the evidence concerning Harry Kelley’s activities in a court of law later this year."
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, (ATF) and the Texas Rangers. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney John Craft.