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Saturday, May 09, 2015

Palos Hill Felon Charged with Illegally Possessing and Dealing Firearms; 10 Guns Seized



CHICAGO ― Ten assorted pistols, rifles, shotguns, and a revolver have been seized and a Palos Hills man is facing federal firearms charges as a result of an investigation led by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Over the course of the investigation, the defendant illegally sold eight firearms to a confidential informant, and two additional firearms were seized from the defendant’s residence at the time of his arrest in March 2015.

Steven Riley, 23, of Palos Hills, was charged yesterday in a seven count indictment by a federal grand jury on charges of being a felon-in-possession of firearms and dealing firearms without a federal license. Riley was arrested on a federal complaint in March 2015, and remains on bond. Riley will be arraigned on a date to be determined by U.S. District Court Judge Virginia M. Kendall.

According to the complaint, beginning in October 2014 through February 2015, Riley sold numerous firearms to a confidential informant (CI). In recorded conversations between Riley and the CI, Riley discussed the importance of removing the serial numbers so that the firearms could not be traced. Riley also supplied the CI with ammunition at three of the five controlled purchases; one of the guns purchased by the CI was loaded with ammunition.

According to the charges, the CI purchased eight firearms in total from Riley; four rifles, three shotguns, and a revolver, many of which had obliterated serial numbers. Riley is also charged with illegal possession of two loaded semi-automatic pistols recovered at his residence during the execution of a search warrant. In addition, the indictment seeks forfeiture of 1,872 rounds of ammunition seized from his residence on the day of his arrest.

Being a felon-in-possession of a firearm carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Dealing firearms without a federal license carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. If convicted, the court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal statutes and the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines.

The charges were announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois and Carl Vasilko, Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The Hickory Hills Police Department assisted in the investigation.

The government is being represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Pozolo. Criminal complaints are not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

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