Orlando, Florida –A federal jury has found Wilmer Eduardo Mejia-Palacios (36, Orlando) guilty of four counts of making a false statement to a federally licensed firearms dealer. Mejia-Palacios faces up to five years in federal prison on each count. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for December 16, 2020.
Mejia-Palacios had been indicted on February 12, 2020. A superseding indictment was returned on September 2, 2020.
According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, Mejia-Palacios attempted to purchase firearms in Orlando on four separate occasions. In connection with those attempted purchases, Mejia-Palacios completed firearms transaction record: ATF 4473, claiming that he was a United States citizen. Those claims were false. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement Firearm Purchase Program referred the case to agents at Homeland Security Investigations.
This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Terry B. Livanos.
This is another case prosecuted as part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” Program (PSN), which is a nationwide, crime reduction strategy aimed at decreasing violent crime in communities. It involves a comprehensive approach to public safety — one that includes investigating and prosecuting crimes, along with prevention and reentry efforts. In the Middle District of Florida, U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez coordinates PSN efforts in cooperation with various federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.