Target of U.S. Attorney’s Office Anti-Violent Crime Initiative Guilty of Federal Firearms Violation

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BEAUMONT, Texas – A Port Arthur man has pleaded guilty to a federal firearms violation in the Eastern District of Texas, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei today.

Jarrel Jakeem Joseph, 25, pleaded guilty to receipt of a firearm while under indictment today before U.S. District Judge Michael J. Truncale.

“We take violent crime seriously in Southeast Texas, and violent individuals who possess firearms will be held accountable,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei.  “Today’s guilty plea represents another step forward in making Port Arthur a safer community.”

According to court documents, on March 31, 2021, Joseph and several other individuals were observed fighting by law enforcement in the 1600 block of Vicksburg Avenue in Port Arthur.  Joseph left the fight on foot and was observed discarding an object, which was found by law enforcement and determined to be a stolen semiautomatic pistol.  Further investigation revealed that on Oct. 8, 2020, Joseph was placed on probation for seven years after a deferred adjudication of guilt for felony possession of a controlled substance in Jefferson County, Texas.  Joseph is prohibited from possessing or receiving firearms as part of the deferred adjudication.

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Joseph was indicted by a federal grand jury on May 13, 2021.  He faces up to five years in federal prison.  The maximum statutory sentence prescribed by Congress is provided here for information purposes, as the sentencing will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.  A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime.  Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

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This case is being investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Port Arthur Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Quinn.


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