Wells Man Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to Firearms Dealers | USAO-ME

PORTLAND, Maine—A Wells man pleaded guilty today in federal court to providing false information to firearms dealers while purchasing firearms, Acting U.S. Attorney Donald E. Clark announced.

According to court records, in April 2019, Christopher Thomas Proach, 24, purchased seven firearms from three different federal firearm licensees in Cumberland and York counties. While purchasing the firearms, Proach responded “Yes” to a question on an ATF form that asked him if he was purchasing the firearms for himself. In truth, he was purchasing the firearms for a Connecticut resident. He gave all seven firearms to the Connecticut resident immediately after the sales. It is against federal law to provide false information to federal firearm licensees when purchasing firearms from them.

Proach faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each of the three counts to which he pleaded guilty. He will be sentenced after the completion of a presentence investigation report by the U.S. Probation Office. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Wells Police Department investigated the case as part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) initiative.

PSN is a nationwide initiative that brings together federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement officials, prosecutors, community leaders and other stakeholders to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in a community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. PSN is coordinated by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices in the 94 federal judicial districts throughout the 50 states and U.S. territories. PSN is customized to account for local violent crime problems and resources. Across all districts, PSN follows four key design elements of successful violent crime reduction initiatives: community engagement, prevention and intervention, focused and strategic enforcement, and accountability.

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