Customs After Inter Ordnance


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Roon
October 3, 2004, 12:24 AM
Sat, Oct. 02, 2004

New indictment revises gun charges
Documents omit most weapon types men were accused of importing

EMILY S. ACHENBAUM
Charlotte Observer Staff Writer

New federal indictments were unsealed Wednesday against a pair of Union County-based brothers already charged with selling more than 3,500 Russian and Soviet machine guns.

Oliver Wiegand, 38, and Ulrich Wiegand, 34, are now charged with two counts of presenting false information to U.S. Customs while importing approximately 7,500 units of a machine gun part.

In May and July of 2000, the indictment says, the Wiegands illegally got the items into the country using false invoices and declarations, listing wrong countries of origin and listing the equipment as deactivated under Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives specifications.

But the new indictment also revises and narrows some of the charges in the original indictment filed in February by omitting most types of guns the brothers are accused of importing.

The new indictment states the brothers' alleged illegal activities involved PPSH 41 Russian machine guns. The old one listed several types of guns, including guns from Brazil and England. It's not clear why those guns are no longer part of the indictment.

"Apparently, the newer indictment omits all reference to several types of kits in the first indictment," said Lyle Yurko, Ulrich Wiegand's attorney. "We're pleased those kits are not alleged as illegal," he said.

Representatives from the U.S. District Attorney's Office in Charlotte said they could not comment on the indictments.

In February, the brothers, German nationals, were charged with importing illegal machine guns and money laundering in an 83-count indictment.

Prosecutors say the Wiegands, using their businesses in Witten, Germany, and Ferlach, Austria, illegally imported the guns, selling them in parts kits without background checks or recording ownership registration.

Their attorneys say the men sold parts kits, not operable guns, and the Wiegands are victims of vague ATF guidelines.

Both of the men are out on bond and have forfeited their passports.

Oliver Wiegand, who posted a $1 million bond, agreed to travel only for business purposes within the United States. Ulrich Wiegand is out on a $500,000 bond, and agreed not to leave the western and central districts of the state.

The brothers operate a federally licensed gun dealership in Monroe, Inter Ordnance of America.

They sold over the Internet and by mail, prosecutors said. Inter Ordnance got a license from the city of Monroe to sell firearms in 1998.

The original 83-count indictment was the result of a two-year investigation.

Inter Ordnance's Web site is still active.

Thursday, the site advertised a rare Yugoslavian rifle, rifles used by Soviet infantry until the end of World War II, and free shipping on most items more than $100.

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Maxinquaye
October 3, 2004, 01:11 AM
Anyone know if this stuff is trumped up or not? The article is very vague and contains enough fluff "anti" words to make it seem as if the BATF is trying to railroad more honest businessmen. :uhoh: :barf:

Roon
October 3, 2004, 01:26 AM
From what I've heard, the Feds are doing this to get the list of buyers of the parts kits, keepin' an eye on them.

Inter Ordnance, IIRC, has passed off some shoddy goods, but I can't honestly say that first hand, I've never had any dealings with them.

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