Two men from Virginia Beach, a 42-year old and a 50-year-old, were arrested last week on gun charges. One man is already a convicted felon, which means that he is banned from owning guns.
The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives commented that authorities discovered an unusually large amount of weaponry for the Virginia Beach area. According to court documents, the men were arrested on gun charges after they allegedly sold 20 machine guns and 15 improvised explosive devices to an undercover agent from the 42-year-old man’s house. The weapons were claimed to be made at the 50-year-old man’s business, which offers a weapons painting and detailing service.
Authorities reported that the guns were manufactured by changing semi-automatic rifles to fully automatic rifles, and the IED’s were made of pipes filled with gunpowder. Two undercover operations were carried out in September and October. Authorities reported that they paid more than $50,000 during the two transactions for machine gun silencers, night vision goggles, 20 machine guns and 15 IEDs.
According to the undercover agent, the Virginia Beach men allegedly showed him how to make the weapons more dangerous. The agent was told he could create more damage with the IEDs by filling the weapons with projectiles such as BBs. The agent was also allegedly shown how to make an IED that can be dropped into a vehicle’s gas tank.
Phone calls before and during the transactions were recorded. Marijuana and other firearms were found at the home where the transactions took place, said authorities. Investigators have not reported where or who the men got the machine guns from. However, authorities did say that while the 50-year-old man’s business was under surveillance, several large crates were shipped to the address.