Two men pleaded guilty to buying and smuggling weapons into Mexico, the first convictions from the federal government's bungled and controversial Operation Fast and Furious.
Jacob Wayne Chambers and Jacob Anthony Montelongo each pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge. Montelongo also pleaded guilty to selling firearms without license. The men were allegedly straw buyers, individuals who would legally buy weapons on the Border States and deliver them to Mexican drug gangs, reported Fox News.
The pair admitted to being involved in a 20-person gun running gang, accused of selling guns to the Sinaloa Cartel.
The goal of Operation Fast and Furious was to follow weapons into the hands of the Mexican drug lords. However, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, the agency that conducted the operation, lost track of the weapons. The agency admits that over 1,400 of the 2,000 weapons are missing.
Chambers and Monelongo admitted that the they bought guns under the claim that the weapons were for themselves, when they were bought for the organizers of their gang to give to the cartel. Chambers bought 79 guns from three licensed dealers in Arizona from September 2009 to December 2009. He received a $50 payment AK-47s for rifles and $100 for .50-caliber rifles. Montelongo purchases 109 weapons and received $50 for pistols, $100 for rifles and $150 for .50 caliber rifles, according to the Associated Press.
Each faces five years in prison and $250,000 fine. They are scheduled to undergo their sentencing on May 21.