Las Vegas man pleads guilty to selling machine gun to undercover Nampa cop

July 12, 2013 

— Phillip Bernadino Chavez, 29, entered a guilty plea in federal court Thursday to a charge of possessing a machine gun.

Chavez and co-defendant Ronald Alexander, 38, of Boise offered to sell the automatic weapon to an undercover Nampa Police Department detective in December. The men asked $3,200 for the gun, police said.

Alexander pleaded guilty in May to one count of unlawfully possessing a firearm and one count of transferring a firearm in violation of the National Firearm Registration and Transfer Record.

As a felon, Alexander was barred from owning a firearm. He was convicted of a Washington robbery in 2001.

According to the plea agreement, the men met with the undercover officer with a Pioneer Arms Corporation 7.62x25 rifle and three magazines. Chavez and Alexander were arrested as soon as the transaction was complete.

In court Thursday, Chavez said he knew the gun was fully automatic. An examination by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives confirmed that the rifle was a machine gun.

Chavez faces up to ten years in prison. His sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 23. Alexander will be sentenced Monday.

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