A weapons pipeline from Georgia to New York was shut down by authorities who busted six gun traffickers who conspired to unload an arsenal of firearms on the streets of Brooklyn, officials said.
The deadly weapons seized — some of which were loaded at the time of the sales — included an AR-15, a MAC-11, two TEC-9 automatic weapons, and 151 varieties of pistols and revolvers.
A long-term joint investigation by the NYPD’s Firearms Investigations Unit and the Brooklyn DA’s Major Narcotics Investigations Bureau netted six arrests and a 558-count indictment on a host of weapons charges.
Among those arrested was alleged ringleader Michael Brewer Quick, who has residences in LaGrange, Ga., and on Staten Island.
Quick conspired with five associates, including his wife and two uncles, to amass a stockpile of firearms in Georgia and nearby, and transport them from Georgia to Canarsie, where they were sold for huge profits, according to court papers.
Prosecutors said Quick made a total of 13 car trips from Georgia to Canarsie up the I-95 corridor, carrying as many as 25 firearms at a time, and sold them to an undercover NYPD officer at the corner of Foster Avenue and East 96th Street.
Quick’s wife, Aliyah Camille Dowell, uncles Rodney Cantrell Brewer and Albert Ellis Pless, and associates Emmanuel Caswell and Marcus White worked with Quick to collect the firearms in and around Georgia, and to wire money from New York to Georgia to fund the initial purchases of the guns, officials said.
The operation was a quick cash machine.
A 9mm purchased in Georgia for $200 could be easily resold in Brooklyn for $1,000, officials said.
“Guns sold illegally find their way into the hands of criminals and often destroy lives,” Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said.
“This family of gun traffickers did not hesitate to distribute illegal guns in the Canarsie section of Brooklyn, but thanks to the hard work of the investigators and prosecutors involved, this pipeline of firearms has been shut down.”
The investigation featured the biggest single buy by the firearms recovery unit in NYPD history: 25 guns in one of the 13 exchanges. The previous record was 16 guns.
The suspects were careful to select guns that could be easily concealed during the 800-mile trip.
“The apparently easy accessibility of these weapons threatened the safety and security of our Brooklyn communities,” said Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson. “We will remain vigilant in the fight against the trafficking and sale of illegal guns.”
The defendants, except Quick’s wife, were charged with criminal possession of a firearm and conspiracy. Dowell was charged with conspiracy. They are all awaiting arraignment.
Additional reporting by Kirstan Conley.