BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — A Covington man has pleaded guilty in federal court to charges he supplied firearms to Connecticut gang members.
Stephfan Sanderson, 24, pleaded guilty Tuesday, Nov. 15, pleaded guilty yesterday before U.S. District Judge Victor A. Bolden in Bridgeport, Connecticut, to a firearms trafficking offense, said Vanessa Roberts Avery, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut.
According to court documents and statements made in court, the FBI; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Drug Enforcement Administration; U.S. Marshals Service and Bridgeport Police have been investigating multiple Bridgeport-based gangs whose members are involved in narcotics trafficking, murder and other acts of violence, Avery said.
Sanderson, also known as “Birdy” and “Beans," formerly resided in Bridgeport. From at least 2017 until his arrest on Nov. 12, 2020, he received at least 25 firearms in Georgia and Alabama "and distributed them to individuals he had reason to know would commit felonies with those firearms," Avery said.
The individuals included members of the “Greene Homes Boyz” (“GHB/Hotz”) and Original North End (“O.N.E.”) street gangs in Bridgeport.
"Some of the firearms (Sanderson) trafficked were capable of firing multiple bullets with the single pull of the trigger," Avery said in a news release.
Sanderson pleaded guilty to one count of crossing state lines with the intent to engage in the unlicensed dealing of firearms, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years. A sentencing is not scheduled.
He has been detained since his arrest, Avery said.
The FBI’s Safe Streets and Violent Crimes Task Forces, ATF, DEA, U.S. Marshals Service, Bridgeport Police Department, Connecticut State Police and the Bridgeport State’s Attorney’s Office conducted the investigation with the assistance of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Connecticut Forensic Science Laboratory and the Stratford and Naugatuck Police Departments.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rahul Kale, Jocelyn C. Kaoutzanis, Stephanie T. Levick and Karen L. Peck are prosecuting the case.
This prosecution is a part of the Justice’s Department’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), Project Longevity and Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) programs.
PSN is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.
As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.
Project Longevity is a comprehensive initiative to reduce gun violence in Connecticut’s major cities. OCDETF identifies, disrupts and dismantles drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs and transnational criminal organizations through a prosecutor-led and intelligence-driven approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.