Deputy U.S. Marshal Charged with Providing a Firearm to a Convicted Felon

Newark, N.J. — October 17, 2008 — A Deputy United States Marshal was charged in a federal Indictment unsealed today for providing a convicted felon with a handgun, U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie announced.

According to the Indictment, which was returned Oct. 16 and unsealed with today’s arrest, Antoine Dobson, 28, of Irvington, a Deputy U.S. Marshal assigned to the Southern District of New York, provided a semi-automatic handgun to Larry Langforddavis, 33, of Hillside, who is a previously convicted felon. Dobson purchased the semi-automatic handgun by certifying on United States Marshals Service letterhead that it was to be used for “official use” only and that he would not transfer it to anyone else.

Langforddavis, a close friend of Dobson, was also charged in the Indictment with the unlawful possession of the weapon. The Indictment alleges Langforddavis is prohibited from possessing firearms due to his past criminal convictions on charges that include aggravated assault, robbery, and unlawful possession of a handgun.

Dobson was arrested this morning by agents of the Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General and is scheduled to make an initial appearance before United States Magistrate Judge Michael A. Shipp at 2:00 p.m. today.

In February, Langforddavis was arrested in the parking lot of an adult entertainment club and charged by criminal Complaint for the possession of Dobson’s handgun after police officers with the Elizabeth Police Department recognized him as an individual who had days earlier misrepresented himself as a law enforcement officer to the police officers by showing them a handgun strapped to his ankle. Currently, Langforddavis is free on a $250,000 secured bond with electronic monitoring.

Dobson is charged in Count One of the Indictment with disposing a firearm, loaded with ten rounds of hollow-point ammunition, to a convicted felon. Count Two charges Dobson with aiding and abetting Langforddavis’ unlawful possession of the firearm and ammunition. Langforddavis is also charged in Count Two for the unlawful possession of the weapon. Both counts carry statutory maximum prison sentences of 10 years and maximum fines of $250,000.

An Indictment is merely an accusation. Despite Indictment, every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Christie credited Special Agents of the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, N.Y. Field Office, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James E. Tomlinson, the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Weysan Dun, in Newark, and the U.S. Marshals Service for the Southern District of N.Y., under the direction of Marshal Joseph R. Guccione, and the U.S. Marshals Service for the District of N.J., under the direction of Marshal James T. Plousis, with investigation of the case. Christie also credited the Elizabeth and Fanwood Police Departments for their assistance.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas R. Calcagni of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Special Prosecutions Division in Newark.