BEAUMONT – A Port Arthur man has pleaded guilty to federal firearms violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston today.
Javier Jesus Morales, 26, pleaded guilty to possession of an unregistered firearm today before U.S. District Judge Marcia A. Crone.
According to information presented in court, on Oct. 27, 2020, Morales sold a Glock .9mm pistol to a federal agent acting in an undercover capacity after the agent responded to a posting on the social media forum “Snapchat” advertising for the sale. The Glock pistol was outfitted with an attached aftermarket “auto-switch.” The auto-switch is a device used to convert a standard, legal handgun into a fully automatic machine gun, which if not registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record is illegal to possess. The firearm was not registered to Morales.
Morales was indicted by a federal grand jury on Feb. 2, 2022. He faces up to 10 years in federal prison. The maximum statutory sentence prescribed by Congress is provided here for information purposes, as the sentencing will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, 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.
This case is being investigated by the Beaumont Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph R. Batte.
Public Affairs Officer/Law Enforcement Coordinator
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Texas