March 16, 2005
COUNTY PAWN BROKER PLEADS GUILTY TO ILLEGAL GUN SALES
Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced
today that Alexander Sabintsev and Star Pawn Brokers of Edgewood,
Maryland entered guilty
pleas in the Circuit Court for Harford County, to illegal sales
of regulated assault weapons and participating in "straw purchases" of
handguns. A "straw purchase” is a purchase by one person
for another person who is prohibited by law from possessing a firearm.
In this case two assault weapons were sold to undercover police
officers without complying with the requirements for the filing
of an application with the State Police. The filing of such an
application triggers a background investigation of the purchaser
in order to determine whether the purchaser is prohibited from
possessing such a weapon.
Mr. Sabintsev also participated in three "straw purchases" to
undercover State Troopers. In each case Sabinstev knew that those
purchasing the guns were buying them for others whom he believed
were prohibited from purchasing such firearms.
Mr. Sabintsev was acting on behalf of Star Enterprises, Inc. d/b/a
Star Pawn Brokers. Star City Enterprises was the firearms licensee
at the time of the sales. That license has been suspended and will
be revoked as a result of the guilty pleas in this case.
Judge William O. Carr sentenced Mr. Sabinstev to three years incarceration
which was suspended and placed him on supervised probation for
two years. Judge Carr also ordered Mr. Sabintsev to pay fines totaling
Star City Enterprises was fined $1000 and ordered to repay the
Maryland State Police $2112, which is the sum that was paid for
the guns purchased by the undercover officers.
This case was investigated and prosecuted by the Firearms Trafficking
Unit of the Office of the Attorney General, funded by the Governor’s
Office of Crime Control and Prevention in cooperation with the
Firearms Enforcement Section of the Maryland State Police and the
Firearms and Violence Unit of the Baltimore County Police.