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Raleigh Man Arrested On Weapons Charges As Part Of NYC Sting Operation

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RALEIGH, N.C. — New York City Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly and Queens County District Attorney Richard A. Brown have announced the arrest of Sydney Ifill, 32, a Raleigh resident accused of gun trafficking, as part of a two-year undercover investigation called "Operation Iron Pipeline."

During the investigation, according to authorities, Ifill sold 11 illegal firearms to an undercover detective in New York, including two MAC-11 semi-automatic weapons, a Browning semi-automatic pistol and numerous boxes of ammunition for a total of $8,270.

"This arrest marks yet another success in our continuing effort to rid this city of deadly firearms," Kelly said. "This individual tried to make quick cash by smuggling illegal firearms from North Carolina and selling them anywhere he could in Queens. Instead, our officers found him, tracked him and put him behind bars.

"I want to commend everyone who helped make this case a success, especially the undercover detective who put his life on the line to capture this criminal."

Said Brown: "The defendant is alleged to have sold 11 guns and assorted ammunition to an undercover police officer in six separate transactions over a 13-month period and to have received a total of $8,270 in exchange. The illegal sale of firearms is a serious public safety threat because lethal weapons sold in the black market infest our neighborhoods with gunfire and bloodshed and exact a deadly toll of suffering and death."

Operation Iron Pipeline

began in April 2001 after detectives developed information about Ifill and his gun-trafficking operation.

Ifill, a Queens native, allegedly got firearms from a variety of sources, including gun shows and gun shops in North Carolina, as well as through contacts in Virginia. He then brought them to New York.

He was arrested in his home in Raleigh, where he subsequently waived extradition and was brought to New York.

He was charged in a 22-count indictment with criminal possession of a weapon and criminal sale of a firearm. He faces a maximum sentence of 59-87 years in prison.

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