There's disturbing news to report in Los Angeles, California where authorities have uncovered a cache of 550 firearms that belong to a Mexican convicted felon after a neighbor submitted a tip about ongoing criminal activities.
After receiving the tip, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office executed a search warrant at the residence of 60-year-old Manuel Fernandez, of Agua Dulce, California; where they knew they were walking into the home of a convicted felon.
When they went inside, they were left in complete disbelief at the number of weapons they would find, having a whopping 432 firearms inside of the residence, which was more than enough to take the convicted felon into custody.
Manuel Fernandez was detained on being a felon in possession of firearms, possession of an assault rifle, a felon in possession of ammunition and possession of large capacity magazines.
A second search of the residence on the following day uncovered an additional 91 firearms which were concealed inside the home.
As a result of searching the property, investigators found evidence that then led them to the home of a woman who is connected to Fernandez, where they would find an additional 30 firearms concealed within her residence.
This makes a total of 553 weapons, which included 57 handguns, hundreds of rifles, both semiautomatic and fully automatic, shotguns, and various modified weapons that is now considered one of the largest seizures in state history.
"Detectives also seized computers, cell phones, and hard drives from the residence believed to be involved in the illicit purchase of firearms by the suspect," the sheriff's department said in its release.
“The case is a testament to the community’s involvement in reducing crime and taking guns out of the hands of criminals,” Sheriff Jim McDonnell said.
Fernandez was given a $35,000 bail, which he immediately paid and was released from custody.
Both the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and the Bureau Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives are researching each of the weapons found to see if they match ballistics testings in any previous crimes, but the finding of so many firearms inside of one felon’s house, let alone one who has the the cash to bond out of jail after these charges.
There's an active investigation into the findings and we'll update the case with any additional information as it's provided.
For those unaware, California itself is one of the strictest gun control policy states in the nation, where every firearm that is classified as an “assault weapon” as per state guidelines is required to be registered with the state of California,
California now defines an “assault weapon” as any semi-automatic, centerfire rifle or semi-automatic pistol that lacks a fixed magazine and has one of a number of features that include a protruding pistol grip or a folding or telescoping stock.
The new law signed in 2017 set forth restricting the sale of those “assault weapons, ” but it doesn't affect those who already own such a firearm. If you already owned such a gun before the new law, you can keep it, but you were supposed to register it with the California Department of Justice before the end of 2017.
Any firearms with magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition were complete banned as per the new law, and owners were supposed to discard those magazines.
What this boils down to, is that clearly the oversight isn't working in a state that has strict gun control policies, and it was unable to prevent Fernandez from obtaining this many weapons.
Whether he has some type of illicit business enterprise remains to be determined, albeit its questionable that a Mexican convicted felon would have this type of arsenal and the resources to release himself from custody if he weren't.
We'll be monitoring this case closely.
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