NEWARK, N.J. – A Passaic County, New Jersey, man with a previous felony conviction today admitted illegally possessing a firearm and ammunition, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.
Aazhone Kawashire Edwin, 25, of Paterson, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Claire C. Cecchi to an indictment charging him with possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
On June 7, 2020, Edwin possessed a firearm loaded with approximately 15 rounds of 9mm ammunition. Edwin has previously been convicted of at least one felony offense, including possession of controlled substances.
The firearms offense to which Edwin pleaded guilty carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentencing is scheduled for March 15, 2022.
Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents and task force officers with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey L. Matthews in Newark, and members of the Paterson Police Department, under the direction of Director Jerry Speziale and Police Chief Ibrahim Baycora, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.
This case is part of the Violent Crime Initiative (VCI), which was formed in 2020 by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, and the City of Paterson’s Department of Public Safety for the purpose of combatting violent crime in and around Paterson. As part of this partnership, federal, state, county, and city agencies collaborate and pool resources to prosecute violent offenders who endanger the safety of the community. The VCI is composed of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the FBI, the ATF, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Marshals, the Paterson Department of Public Safety, the Paterson Police Department, the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office, N.J. State Parole, Passaic County Jail, N.J. State Police Regional Operations and Intelligence Center/Real Time Crime Center, and N.J. Department of Corrections.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Francesca Liquori of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Organized Crime and Gangs Unit in Newark.
Defense counsel: James A. Plaisted Esq., Hackensack, New Jersey