In March 2023, members of the Winnipeg Police Service Firearms Investigations and Enforcement Unit (FIEU) became involved in a lengthy investigation involving the straw purchase of a quantity of firearms and ammunition.
A straw purchase is an illegal firearm purchase where the actual buyer of the gun, being unable to pass the required federal background check or desiring not to have their name associated with the transaction, uses a proxy buyer who can pass the required background check to purchase the firearm for them.
The investigation has determined that firearms and ammunition were purchased from a locally authorized business. However, the straw purchaser illegally sold/traded the weapons to a known gang member between July 2021 and November 2022. Additionally, some firearms were sold in exchange for illicit drugs, at which time the straw purchaser was identified.
The weapons and ammunition illegally purchased include the following:
- 6 x .22 calibre rifles
- 1 x 9mm calibre rifle
- Various ammunition
In September 2022, officers located and seized one of the previously mentioned .22 calibre rifles.
On May 16, 2023, FIEU executed a search warrant at an Inwood, Mb. residence with the assistance of RCMP and the National Weapons Enforcement Support Team (NWEST).
Officers located and seized the following:
- Cellular device
- Firearms Possession Acquisition License (PAL) card
- .50 calibre rifle and ammunition
- Rifle-style pellet gun
A 23-year-old male of Winnipeg has been arrested and is facing the following charges:
- Weapons Trafficking x 2
The accused was released from custody.