District Attorney Vance and Police Commissioner Bratton Announce Indictment of Firearm Ring That Trafficked More Than 80 Guns From “Iron Pipeline” States to Manhattan


April 25, 2016

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., and New York City Police Commissioner William J. Bratton today announced the indictment of ABDUL DAVIS, 52, for selling 82 firearms and corresponding ammunition to an undercover NYPD detective posing as a Manhattan-based gun dealer, and DAVIS’s girlfriend, SHELITA FUNDERBERK, 50, for her role in the sales. The indictment also charges four Virginia- and Georgia-based men – TRENTON POINTER, 45, DAEMON JENKINS, 49, MALIK RAINEY, 44, and MILTON TILLERY, 37 – for knowingly supplying the firearms for illegal sales in New York City. 

The defendants are all charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, as well as various counts of Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the First, Second, and Third Degrees.[1] The indictment follows a long-term investigation, including the use of court-authorized wiretaps, conducted by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office’s Trial Division and detectives from the NYPD’s Firearms Investigation Unit.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., said: “This alleged interstate trafficking conspiracy clearly illustrates how deadly firearms from ‘Iron Pipeline’ states flood New York City’s streets. To stem the flow of illegal guns, we must deter traffickers from this lucrative business by prosecuting not only Manhattan-based illegal weapons dealers, but residents of Southern states who knowingly provide them with guns to be resold in our city.

“But to deter those who stand to make tens of thousands of dollars by selling large quantities of firearms, we must enhance the penalties they face. Currently, whether a defendant sells 10 firearms or 10,000, the penalty is the same: a class B felony. Today I am asking the New York State legislature to create a new A-1 felony, Operating as a Major Firearms Trafficker, for those who illegally sell or possess 20 or more firearms. Modeled after New York’s existing – and proven – Drug Kingpin statute, our proposed Gun Kingpin statute is necessary to put wholesale, illegal weapons dealers out of business.” 

Police Commissioner William J. Bratton said: “Illegal firearms like these fuel the very violence in our streets we seek to combat. As alleged, Abdul Davis is responsible for selling more than six dozen firearms in more than 26 separate transactions on the streets of Manhattan. I commend the investigators of the Firearms Investigations Unit and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office for dismantling this firearms ring.”

According to the indictment and documents filed in court, between March 16, 2015, and April 19, 2016, DAVIS sold 82 firearms, including 67 pistols, 8 revolvers, 5 assault weapons, and 2 shotguns, 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 and matching ammunition.

FUNDERBERK was present for multiple sales, and drove DAVIS to at least two of the transactions. The investigation revealed that FUNDERBERK allowed DAVIS to use funds from her bank account to purchase the firearms, and, on multiple occasions, wired money to DAVIS for that purpose. 

DAVIS allegedly purchased the firearms from Virginia-based co-defendants JENKINS, TILLERY, and POINTER, and Georgia-based RAINEY. Typically, DAVIS negotiated sales over the phone or through text messages, wired money to the firearms dealers’ accounts, and travelled 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 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 22 indictments against 70 gun traffickers operating between New York City and states including Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Ohio, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Since its creation, VCEU has increased gun trafficking prosecutions by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office by more than 1,000 percent, and has conducted investigations resulting in the removal of more than 1,000 illegal firearms from the streets of New York City. 

Assistant District Attorney David Nasar is prosecuting the cases under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Christopher Prevost, Deputy Chief of VCEU; Christopher Ryan, Chief of VCEU; and David O’Keefe, Deputy Chief of the Trial Division; as well as Executive Assistant District Attorney John Irwin, Chief of the Trial Division. Investigative Analysts Stephanie Littell and William Andrewes are assisting with the case. 

District Attorney Vance thanked Police Commissioner Bratton, as well as Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce, Deputy 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, for their assistance with the investigation. 

[1] The charges contained in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. All factual recitations are derived from documents filed in court, including the indictments, and statements made on the record in court.

Defendant Information

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

Charges: 

  • 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 4th Degree, a class E felony, one count

SHELITA FUNDERBERK, D.O.B. 10/31/1965
Linden, NJ

Charges: 

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the First Degree, a class B felony, one count
  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 21 counts
  • Conspiracy in the 4th Degree, a class E felony, one count

TRENTON POINTER, D.O.B. 1/16/1971
Chesterfield, VA

Charges: 

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Second Degree, a class C felony, one count
  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class D felony, eight counts
  • Conspiracy in the 4th Degree, a class E felony, one count

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

Charges: 

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Second Degree, a class C felony, one count
  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class D felony, five counts
  • Conspiracy in the 4th Degree, a class E felony, one count

DAEMON JENKINS, D.O.B. 7/20/1966
Richmond, VA

Charges: 

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class D felony, four counts
  • Conspiracy in the 4th Degree, a class E felony, one count

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

Charges: 

  • Criminal Sale of a Firearm in the Third Degree, a class D felony, one count
  • Conspiracy in the 4th Degree, a class E felony, one count

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