Federal grand jury indicts southwest Missouri man for possession of illegal firearms

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A Sarcoxie, Missouri man who was earlier charged with illegally possessing firearms and ammunition has been indicted by a federal grand jury on additional charges of illegally possessing an unregistered silencer and selector switches to convert semi-automatic firearms into machine guns.

Leng Lee, 35, was charged in a three-count superseding indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield, Mo., on Wednesday, June 12. The superseding indictment replaces an indictment returned on May 7, which charged Lee with being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition.

The federal indictment charges Lee with one count of illegally possessing a device designed to convert a semi-automatic Glock-type pistol into an automatic machine gun, and one count of illegally possessing an unregistered silencer. The indictment also contains the original count of being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition. The indictment alleges that Lee was in possession of a Glock 10mm pistol, two Glock 9mm pistols, and numerous rounds of ammunition.

According to court documents, law enforcement officers participated in the controlled delivery of an international mail package from China addressed to Lee at his residence on April 23, 2019. The parcel contained seven parts (selector switches) that are used to convert a Glock semi-automatic pistol to fire in full-automatic mode.

Officers executed a search warrant at Lee’s residence and found numerous firearms, ammunition, firearm suppressors, suspected methamphetamine, marijuana, suspected stolen farm equipment, and a large amount of cash. According to court documents, Lee told officers that a couple of the firearms were given to him by his deceased father, but the others were purchased by him at gun shows or during hand-to-hand transactions. None of the firearms were purchased from a licensed firearms dealer. Lee also told officers that he had 10-15 past deliveries of the selector switches, and that he was able to convert and successfully fire a Glock pistol as a fully automatic firearm.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Lee has two prior felony convictions for burglary, and prior felony convictions for vandalism, criminal conspiracy, grand theft, and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The charges contained in this indictment are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Carney. It was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Newton, Mo., Sheriff’s Department.

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