Evidently this occurred at the same time as when the Fast & Furious scandal broke.
The Reese family owned a gun shop just outside Deming, N.M., for more than 17 years. Over that time they built up the business into a profitable
enterprise, and Rick had planned to retire and close the store.
His eldest son, Ryin, 24, was in the process of obtaining a Federal Firearms License, or FFL, of his own and was opening a store in nearby Las Cruces,
In August of last year, local ATF agents asked the family to come down to their offices to discuss Ryin’s FFL application. And that is when every
thing went down hill:
When the family showed up at the ATF office, they were arrested on charges of conspiring to illegally sell firearms and assist in smuggling them
to Mexico, money laundering (because they supposedly knew the money paying for the guns had come from illegal activities) and making false statements
in connection with the acquisition of firearms.
At the same time, a task force led by Homeland Security Investigations – including hundreds of federal, state, county and local officers,
helicopters, armored personnel carriers and numerous police cruisers – stormed the Reese property where the store and the Reese home is located.
Officers held an elderly couple, who were camping on the property, at gunpoint as they searched the couple’s RV. Other officers broke into the store
and the basement storage space where they confiscated the store’s inventory, hundreds of guns, almost 2 million rounds of ammunition and more than a
dozen empty gun safes. Officers also broke into the Reese home and seized firearms, jewelry, cash and a coin collection Rick Reese had been building
since he was a young boy. Vehicles, bank accounts and real estate were also seized. Federal prosecutors initiated forfeiture proceedings last December
in an effort to make the seizures permanent before the family even went to trial, which locked up most of the family’s assets leaving them with
little means to pay for legal assistance to fight the charges and the forfeiture efforts.
The article goes on to say that this happened while the news of F&F broke out.
In the mean time, the family has spent a year in jail & had a 3 week trial. The jury had declared the members of the Reese family not guilty on 24
of the 28 counts against them. The jury did convict three of the four family members of making false statements in connection with the acquisition of
In the mean time, even though the Attn. Gen. Eric Holder was found in contempt, nothing has been done to him as of yet.
And after reading the words of U.S. Attorney Ken Gonzales, I guess it's a double standard for private citizens vs. govt. people....
After the Reeses were arrested, U.S. Attorney Ken Gonzales declared, “Those who sell firearms knowing that they will be illegally smuggled into
Mexico to arm Mexican cartels share responsibility for the violence that has been devastating Mexico.” Gonzales continued, “This case serves to
put firearms dealers on notice that they will be held accountable for any failure to comply with federal firearms laws.”
So, what about the people who knew about Fast & Furious while "knowingly" sold guns that were going to be smuggled into Mexico? Where is their jail
time? Oh, that only applies to private citizens I guess.
I'm still searching for more on this story to see if the family was more at fault or just an escape goat.
If any one has more info, please share.....