DA Vance: Major Gun Trafficker Sentenced to 35 Years in Prison


April 16, 2018

Defendant Led Gun Ring that Trafficked 80 Guns from “Iron Pipeline” States to Manhattan 

Two Co-Defendants from Virginia and Georgia Previously Sentenced

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. today announced the sentencing of ABDUL DAVIS, 53, to 35 years in prison for selling 80 firearms and corresponding ammunition to an undercover NYPD detective posing as a Manhattan-based gun dealer. On February 1, 2018, a New York State Supreme Court jury found the defendant guilty of each of the charges in the indictment against him: Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the First and Third Degrees, Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second and Third Degrees, and Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree.

District Attorney Vance also announced the sentencing of co-defendants MILTON TILLERY, 39, and MALIK RAINEY, 45, for knowingly supplying firearms for illegal sales in New York City. On December 13, 2016, TILLERY pleaded guilty in New York State Supreme Court to Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree and Attempted Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree and was sentenced to 1 ½-to-3 years in state prison. On November 13, 2017, RAINEY pleaded guilty to Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Second Degree and Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree and was sentenced to five years in state prison.

“In addition to holding those who commit gun violence accountable, my Office proactively targets major firearms traffickers who inundate our communities with thousands of illegal guns each year,” said District Attorney Vance. “Abdul Davis orchestrated a dangerous scheme to import 80 pistols, revolvers, and assault weapons — including the same high-powered model used in the Sandy Hook massacre — across state lines for profit. Thanks to our Violent Criminal Enterprises Unit and the brave detectives of the NYPD’s Firearms Investigation Unit, he will now serve significant prison time for his campaign to pump out-of-state guns into our streets.”

As proven at trial, between March 16, 2015, and April 19, 2016, DAVIS sold 80 firearms—including  67 pistols, eight revolvers, and five assault weapons—as well as corresponding ammunition to an undercover NYPD detective posing as a Manhattan-based firearms dealer. The sales occurred over 26 separate transactions, all of which took place in the vicinity of West 166th Street and Saint Nicholas Avenue in Washington Heights. The sales were conducted in or around the undercover detective’s vehicle, at an average price of approximately $1,150 per firearm. In one instance, DAVIS sold the undercover a Bushmaster Firearms semi-automatic assault rifle with a hundred-round drum magazine loaded with 96 rounds of matching ammunition.

DAVIS purchased the firearms from Virginia-based co-defendant TILLERY and Georgia-based RAINEY. Typically, DAVIS negotiated sales over the phone or through text messages, wired money to the firearms dealers’ accounts, and traveled to their homes to pick up the weapons. On some occasions, the firearm dealers agreed to receive payment after DAVIS successfully returned to Manhattan and sold the weapons to the undercover detective.

The investigation in this case was conducted jointly by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Violent Criminal Enterprises Unit (VCEU) and the NYPD’s Firearms Investigation Unit. VCEU was created in 2010 by District Attorney Vance to lead the efforts of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in combatting gun and gang violence, with a special focus on illegal firearms trafficking within New York City. Since its formation, VCEU has brought 27 indictments against 83 gun traffickers operating between New York City and states including Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Ohio, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Assistant D.As David Nasar, Deputy Bureau Chief of Trial Bureau 30, and Mireille Dee, also of Trial Bureau 30, handled the prosecution of the case under the supervision of Assistant D.As Christopher Prevost, Chief of VCEU; Christopher Ryan, Former Chief of VCEU; and David O’Keefe, Deputy Chief of the Trial Division; as well as Executive Assistant D.A. John Irwin, Chief of the Trial Division. Investigative Analysts Stephanie Littell, Emily Hogan, and William Andrewes and Former Trial Preparation Assistant Katie Frake also provided assistance with the case.

District Attorney Vance thanked the NYPD, including, Commissioner O’Neill and former Commissioner Bratton, Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea and former Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce, Assistant Chief James Essig, Deputy Inspector Brian Gill, Captain Jonathan Korabel, Lieutenant Thomas McPartland, Sergeants Matthew Griffin and Robert Abramson, Detectives Christopher Shaughnessy and Douglas Lansing, and the undercover detectives of the Firearms Investigation Unit.

District Attorney Vance also thanked the U.S. Marshals Service’s Richmond, VA, Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force, as well as the Union County (NJ)’s Sheriff’s Office’s Warrant Squad, particularly Captain Dennis Burke, for their assistance with the investigation.

 

Defendant Information

ABDUL DAVIS, D.O.B. 3/23/1964

Linden, NJ

Convicted:

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the First Degree, a class B felony, one count
  • Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, a class C felony, 28 counts
  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 80 counts
  • Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 6 counts
  • Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, one count

Sentenced:

  • 35 years in state prison

 

MALIK RAINEY, D.O.B. 4/14/1972

Fayetteville, GA

Convicted:

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Second Degree, a class C felony, one count
  • Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, one count

Sentenced:

  • 5 years in state prison

 

MILTON TILLERY, D.O.B. 12/9/1978

Richmond, VA

Convicted:

  • Attempted Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class E felony, one count
  • Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, one count

Sentenced:

  • 1 ½-to-3 years in state prison