A.G. Schneiderman Announces Guilty Plea Of Uber Driver For His Role In Operating Interstate Gun Trafficking Ring

News from Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman

February 17, 2017

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Joint AG-NYPD Investigation Leads To Guilty Plea For Defendant Marlon Manswell, Who Will Be Sentenced To 4 Years In Prison

Manswell Participated In Trafficking Ring Which Smuggled Guns From South Carolina, North Carolina And Tennessee To The Port Authority Bus Terminal

NEW YORK – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced the guilty plea of Marlon Manswell for his role in a high-volume gun trafficking ring that funneled firearms from South Carolina, North Carolina and Tennessee to New York City, often aboard Greyhound busses.  The investigation, led by the Attorney General’s Organized Crime Task Force and the NYPD’s Gang Squad Brooklyn North, relied on undercover work, wiretaps, and other surveillance resulting in the seizure of 50 illegal guns smuggled into New York City from out-of-state. Manswell, of Brooklyn, pled guilty today to criminal sale of a firearm in the second degree, criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree, and conspiracy in the fourth degree. He will be sentenced to 4 years in prison followed by five years of post-release supervision.

“Gun trafficking rings like the one Marlon Manswell participated in fuel the gun violence that threatens New York families and law enforcement. Even as we work to make our streets safer, illegal out-of-state guns make our job that much harder -- but today’s guilty plea makes clear that we won’t be deterred, and we will bring gun traffickers to justice,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. 

The investigation, which began in June 2015, led to the arrests of Donovan Bryant, Shantae Blue, Marlon Manswell and Colby Inabinet for their alleged participation in the illegal gun trafficking ring.  Bryant – with the aid of Blue, Manswell, and Inabinet – were charged with transporting dozens of guns to New York City from South Carolina and selling them to an undercover officer between June 18 and October 21, 2015.  Bryant, a North Carolina resident who uses a wheelchair, allegedly brought guns from South Carolina to the Port Authority bus terminal in Manhattan.  He then contacted Manswell, an Uber driver, to pick him up and drive him to meet with the undercover officer in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg and East New York neighborhoods.

Inabinet previously pled guilty and the cases against Bryant and Blue are still pending. Manswell is scheduled to be sentenced on March 15.

The charges against the remaining defendants are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

In October of 2016, Attorney General Schneiderman released a first-of-its-kind analysis of tens of thousands of “crime guns” recovered by law enforcement, illustrating gun trafficking trends that undermine New York’s strong laws. The ground-breaking analysis shows that 74 percent of all crime guns recovered by law enforcement originated out-of-state, and nearly nine out of ten (86 percent) of recovered handguns come from out-of-state.

The case is being prosecuted by OCTF Assistant Deputy Attorney General Shanon Nicholas LaCorte. Deputy Attorney General Peri Alyse Kadanoff runs the Attorney General’s Organized Crime Task Force.