NYPD busts illegal gun trafficking ring, credits undercover ‘Detective X’

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly inspect an assault rifle that was sold to undercover officers.

The faint scent of metal filled the air as Police Commissioner Ray Kelly showed off 100 illegal guns seized by the NYPD in an undercover operation that busted members of two weapons trafficking rings.

Joined by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Kelly announced Friday 16 members of two trafficking networks were indicted on gun-related charges. Police arrested 13 of those suspects in the last day in East Harlem, while the others are still at large, Kelly said.

The defendants are accused of selling illegal weapons, likely brought into New York from pawn shops in South Carolina, and selling 129 of them to undercover cops. Those guns ranged from an AK-47 assault rifle sold for $1,600 to a 32-caliber revolver sold for $400.  

Kelly gave a special thanks to an officer he referred to only as “Detective X’ for his “dangerous, undercover” work in the investigation. Bloomberg commended the NYPD for helping to make New York City the safest big city in the nation.

“This investigation illustrates both the problem of illegal guns being purchased in other states and brought here illegally, and the skill and dedication of the NYPD officers who take the guns off the street, often at great risk to themselves,” Bloomberg said.

The bust is the result of two investigations. In an operation called “Mickey Mouse Trap,” undercover cops spent months trying to purchase illegal weapons from 64-year-old career criminal Mitchell “Mickey” Collins. Along with three other suspects, Collins sold undercover officers 88 guns, according to Kelly.

“Getting close to the wily Mickey Collins was no easy matter,” Kelly said. “It’s unusual to see individuals as old as Mickey Collins still engaged in criminal activity. Regrettably, it’s not unusual for young men to get involved in violent street crews.”

The other investigation, “Operation Carver,” targeted street crews who live in or near East Harlem’s Carver Houses. The suspects, all between 17 and 23 years old, belong to crews known as the East Rivery Army, Six-Net, Who-a-Day and the Total Money Gang. Kelly said undercover cops purchased 41 guns and a bulletproof vest from crew members. He issued a warning to other young men who are caught up in illegal gun sales.

“It’s difficult, demanding, dangerous work, but it has to be done,” Kelly said of the investigations. “So, our message is clear – don’t get involved. We are coming after you.”

Kelly added that two NYPD officers dodged gunshots from a suspect they were chasing in Brooklyn Thursday night. They returned fire on the man, shooting him several times. He is in critical condition, according to Kelly, who added that the suspect’s firearm was illegally purchased in 2006 in North Carolina.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Gunther from 'Friends' talks Central Perk

We spoke with Gunther (James Michael Tyler) at the preview for new pop-up Central Perk, based on the cafe in "Friends."

Local

Central Perk opens in SoHo

Central Perk, of "Friends" fame, is giving out free coffee in SoHo through Oct. 18.

National

Beer sponsor Anheuser-Busch reproaches NFL over domestic abuse

Anheuser-Busch chastised the NFL for its handling of domestic violence cases, making it the first major advertiser to put pressure on the league.

Local

Sen. Krueger dishes on prospect of legal marijuana…

New Yorkers may see the legalization of recreational marijuana use as early as 2015 if State Senator Liz Krueger (D) gets her way. The Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act will…

Music

FREEMAN makes Freeman a free man from Ween

For nearly 30 years, Aaron Freeman was known endearingly to his listeners as Gene Ween. But with "FREEMAN," he makes it clear that he's gone somewhere else.

Television

'Outlander' recap: Season 1, Episode 6: 'The Garrison…

Whipping, punching, kicking and a marriage contract. "Outlander" is not for the faint of heart this week with "The Garrison Commander."

The Word

The Word: Hey girl, it's a girl for…

It's a girl for Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes, who reportedly welcomed a daughter last Friday, according to Us Weekly. The super-private couple managed to…

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, Sept. 16: 'New Girl,'…

Check out the season premiere of "New Girl," as Jess competes with Jessica Biel for a guy's attentions.

MLB

5 top contenders for NL Rookie of the…

The outing rekindled award talk for deGrom, who appears to hold the top spot for NL Rookie of the Year honors. Metro breaks down a few other contenders.

College

College football Top 25 poll (AP rankings)

College football Top 25 poll (AP rankings)

NFL

Tom Coughlin says Giants 'beat themselves' against Cardinals

Head coach Tom Coughlin, who had a day to cool off and reflect, still sounded like he had a gnawing feeling in his gut.

NFL

Marty Mornhinweg accepts blame for Jets timeout fiasco

Jets fans looking for a scapegoat for Sunday’s timeout fiasco found a willing party on Monday: Marty Mornhinweg.

Style

Rachel Zoe: New York Fashion Week Spring 15

Rachel Zoe goes 'Glam bohemia' for Spring.

Food

Where to find SweeTango apples

Introduced in 2009, SweeTango — a hybrid of Honeycrisp and Zestar — is a sweet apple with plenty of crunch.

Style

London Fashion Week recap

London Fashion week gets in on the action with politics, heritage and summertime living.

Food

Padma Lakshmi's recipe for green mango curry

Padma Lakshmi shares her recipe for green mango curry in UNICEF's new book, "UNICHEF."