Suffolk Man Sentenced for Straw-Purchasing Firearms Conspiracy

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

NORFOLK, Va. – A Suffolk man was sentenced today to 156 months in prison in connection with aiding and abetting the making of a materially false statement during the purchase of a firearm and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

According to court documents, from approximately August 2018 to July 2020, Darren Walker, 34, and co-conspirators were members of a straw-purchasing conspiracy in which the co-conspirators straw-purchased multiple firearms for Walker, who would then transport the firearms from Hampton Roads to Baltimore, Maryland, among other locations, and resell them for a profit. Walker was attributed with being involved in the trafficking of at least 28 firearms. Four of the straw-purchased firearms were recovered in Baltimore from individuals who were involved in either drug-related arrests, were persons prohibited from possessing firearms, or both, including the recovery of a firearm loaded with an extended magazine containing 27 rounds of ammunition.

Jessica D. Aber, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Charlie J. Patterson, Special Agent in Charge of the ATF’s Washington Field Division; and Al Chandler, Chief of Suffolk Police, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson.

Assistant U.S. Attorney William Jackson and Amanda Turner prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), which 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.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:21-cr-89.