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

Eric Garner death prompts NYPD retraining, pols demanding…

The New York City Police Department will revise training procedures for its officers following the death of Staten Island man Eric Garner after an arrest gone awry.

National

Parched Texas town turns to sewage water to…

By Marice RichterDALLAS (Reuters) - When the going got tough due one of with worst droughts in a century, the parched Texas city of Wichita…

International

NYPD: Robber makes elderly man drive to Queens…

A robber grabbed an elderly man's neck outside a Queens supermarket, stole his wallet and made him drive to ATMs for withdrawals last week, police said.

Local

Tattooed, bearded suspect sought in Williamsburg bike theft:…

The suspected thief faces grand larceny charges after investigators said he entered the building on North 5th Street in Williamsburg.

Arts

Don't miss 'Charles James: Beyond Fashion' at the…

Have you been meaning to see "Charles James: Beyond Fashion"? There are only two weeks left to get to the Met and catch this amazing American fashion designer's collection.

Television

Zac Posen talks 'Project Runway' and what it…

We talked to Zac Posen, judge and designer extraordinaire, about the new season of "Project Runway" and what keeps him coming back after three seasons.

Television

'Face Off' contestant David 'DOC' O'Connell sounds off…

David "DOC" O'Connell tells us about getting cast on Season 7 of Syfy's "Face Off," premiering tonight at 9.

Arts

PHOTO: Wildlife photographer Marc Mol captures amazing aerial…

This aerial image was taken by photographer Marc Mol who spotted the animals during an air safari in Zambia.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's, Angels, Dodgers, Brewers lead…

MLB Power Rankings: A's, Angels, Dodgers, Brewers lead pack

NFL

2014 NFL season betting odds: Which team will…

2014 NFL season betting odds: Which team will win Super Bowl?

NFL

5 players to watch at Giants training camp

Metro takes a look at five players who will be on everyone’s mind when Giants training camp gets underway.

NFL

'Vicktory dogs' travel road to rehabilitation seven years…

Of the dozens of dogs groomed by Bad Newz Kennels, 48 were rescued and 22 of the pit bull terriers have emerged at Best Friends Animal Society.

Home

5 New Ikea products that will change your…

We round-up the latest must-have products.

Food

Recipe: Wolfgang Puck's Buttermilk French Toast

We recently spent some time chatting with restauranteur/celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck at his Wolfgang Puck American Grille in the Borgata in Atlantic City. Puck wanted…

Style

Go retro with your sneakers

The best of wacky new sneakers.

Parenting

Buy gently worn back-to-school clothes with Kidizen

Kidizen allows parents to buy and sell gently worn back-to-school clothes.