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Leader of crew accused of stealing 340 guns gets 10 years

Posted September 1

— A Georgia man described as the ringleader of a crew that broke into 14 gun stores in three states and stole 340 guns has been sentenced to 10 years in federal prison.

U.S. Attorney John Horn, in a news release Thursday, said 26-year-old Devonnaire Coffey of Augusta pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal firearms from licensed gun dealers, theft of firearms from licensed gun dealers, and possession and sale of stolen firearms. In addition to the prison time, he was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $51,128.

"Coffey endangered the public by stealing firearms and selling them to whoever had the money to buy them," Horn said. "His return to gun stores he had already broken into shows a complete lack of fear and, importantly, that his desire for personal gain outweighed any concerns he may have had for the safety of citizens both in this community and elsewhere."

The thefts occurred at gun stores in Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Horn says Coffey burglarized some Georgia businesses multiple times, including one location in Elberton twice, one in Canton twice and one in McDonough twice.

Firearms stolen by Coffey have been discovered by law enforcement as far away as Chicago and Washington, D.C., and have ended up in the hands of convicted felons, been used in shootings and carried by drug dealers, Horn's office said. Some of the guns remain at large.

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