More than 200 Firearms Seized in ATF, Burrillville Police Department Project Safe Neighborhoods Investigation

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

PROVIDENCE, RI – A Burrillville, RI, man was arrested on Thursday following a Project Safe Neighborhoods investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosive (ATF) and the Burrillville Police Department that resulted in the overnight seizure of 211 firearms and pounds of ammunition during a court-authorized search of his home, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.

The firearms and ammunition were allegedly discovered in the residence of Ronald Andruchuk, 37, after officers responded to his home for the ninth time in recent months to investigate reports of shots fired. Shots were still being fired as officers arrived, several of which traveled over the heads of law enforcement, passing within four feet of the officers. Andruchuk was allegedly found to be wearing a bulletproof vest and to be carrying four firearms and methamphetamine.

A court-authorized search of the defendant’s home found 211 firearms and the thousands of rounds of ammunition strewn throughout the residence and the property he shares with his wife and three young children.

According to charging documents, in the fall of 2021, ATF became aware that between July 2021 and November 2021, Andruchuk purchased 169 firearms from federally licensed firearms dealers. It is alleged that, when making the purchases, Andruchuk made false statements on ATF applications.  

A subsequent investigation determined that in April 2018, Cranston Police encountered Andruchuk who allegedly exhibited a strong odor of marijuana. He claimed to be a RI medical marijuana patient and presented a medical marijuana card; in August 2019, a Cranston Detective observed an alleged drug transaction between Andruchuk  and another individual. Andruchuk was detained and allegedly found to be in possession of numerous oxycodone pills, morphine, and naloxone. He allegedly admitted to purchasing the drugs and having a substance abuse problem; and in December 2021, it is alleged that two firearms, drugs, and other items were located in the  drop ceiling  of a bathroom inside a Millbury, MA, retail store shortly after Andruchuk vacated the restroom. One of the firearms was listed as belonging to Andruchuk, who did not have a license to possess a firearm in Massachusetts.

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Andruchuk is charged by way of a federal criminal complaint with possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, false statements in an application to purchase firearms, and causing false records to be kept by a federally licensed firearms dealer. 

A federal criminal complaint is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is 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.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Ronald R. Gendron and Sandra R. Hebert.