Wichita Falls man pleads guilty to possession of unregistered firearm
WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - A Wichita Falls man pleaded guilty Wednesday to possessing devices that convert semi-automatic weapons into machineguns, according to Prerak Shah, acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.
Paul David Shaw Jr., 30, was first arrested in Wichita Falls in May on a federal warrant. He was then indicted in July, and plead guilty Wednesday to one count of possession of an unregistered firearm.
Plea papers state Shaw admitted to using Snapchat to advertise the sale of Glock “switches.” Also known as “auto sears,” switches are devices designed to convert semi-automatic pistols into fully automatic firearms, which are classified under federal law as machineguns.
An undercover federal agent reportedly bought two Glock switches from Shaw and test fired them; they worked as intended and fired more than one round of ammunition with a single depression of the trigger.
More switches were found after law enforcement reportedly searched a building used by Shaw.
“Switches allow criminals to fire off multiple rounds with a single squeeze of a trigger,” said U.S. Attorney Shah. “Unfortunately, we’re seeing an influx of switches on our streets, where they are inflicting serious harm. ATF and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are committed to keeping our communities safe by keeping these dangerous items out of the wrong hands.”
Shaw is facing a maximum of 10 years in prison and possible fines.
“Someone selling tools that make firearms fully automatic is one of law enforcement’s greatest fears. Automatic weapons in the hands of those aiming to cause harm is what keeps cops up at night. The fact that Mr. Shaw was selling these on social media should cause us all grave concern. I applaud the efforts of all of those involved in the arrest of this reckless individual,” said ATF Dallas Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey C. Boshek II.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives’ Dallas Field Division investigated the crime with help from the Wichita Falls Police Department.
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