Virginia Man Sentenced for Felon in Possession of Firearms

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Yusuf Abdirizak Wehelie, 26, of Burke, was sentenced today to 10 years in prison for possession of firearms by a convicted felon.

Wehelie pleaded guilty on Nov. 15, 2016. According to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, In December 2015, Wehelie met with an FBI undercover employee (UCE #1)and engaged in a consensually recorded conversation. During the conversation, Wehelie discussed his background and told UCE #1 he was a felon, referring to his felony conviction for burglary in Fairfax County. As a convicted felon, Wehelie is prohibited from owning, possessing, or transporting firearms. In January 2016, UCE #1 asked Wehelie if he would be willing to move firearms and he willingly agreed to do so.

According to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, in February 2016, during a consensually recorded meeting, Wehelie met with an FBI undercover employee (UCE #2) in Baltimore. UCE #2 showed Wehelie four 9mm automatic pistols with can-style suppressors and eight 20-round magazines. Unbeknownst to Wehelie, the four pistols had been rendered inoperable before they were provided to him. UCE #2 informed Wehelie that the firearms had the ability to fire up to 1,200 rounds per minute in fully automatic mode. Wehelie told UCE #2 he had fired a weapon before but “needs more practice.” After viewing, handling, and being fully advised of the firearms’ capabilities, Wehelie concealed all four firearms in towels, and then loaded them into a duffle bag. Wehelie was paid $300 by UCE #1 for transporting the firearms.

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and Andrew W. Vale, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee. This case was investigated by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorney John T. Gibbs and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Brandon L. Van Grack prosecuted the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:16-cr-162.

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