MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A Hialeah Officer along with his wife who was once a former police were both sentenced Thursday in connection with the sale of hundreds of firearms without a license.
Rafael Oscar Valdes, a police officer with the City of Hialeah since 2004, and his wife Tammy Lynn Valdes, once employed as an officer with the City of West Miami, were both indicted on December 13, 2012 for dealing firearms without a license.
On January 9th, after a two week trial, Rafael Valdes, according to the U.S. Department of Justice, was sentenced to 60 months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. Tammy Valdes was sentenced to 42 months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. Both were ordered to pay $6,613.51 in restitution.
Over the course of the two week trial, according to the DOJ, there were over 300 items of evidence presented.
Starting as early as July 2005, and continuing through June 2012, the Valdeses sold hundreds of firearms. The defendants, in November of 2008, began buying and selling firearms under the ficticious name of Custom Weapons Systems.
The DOJ reports that the Valdeses advertised and sold over 100 firearms on the internet to people across the nation. The pair also visited gun shows and purchased over 400 firearms and sold over 500. The defendants also allegedly sold nine firearms to undercover agents, solicited the purchase of firearms from undercover agents, and offered to acquire firearms for undercover agents on a repetitive basis.
The jury convicted Valdes with dealing firearms without a license, making a false statement to a federal firearms dealer, interstate transportation of stolen property, as well as filing false tax returns from 2008-2011. Tammy Valdes was convicted with dealing in firearms without a license and filing false tax returns as well.
During trial, evidence was presented that the Valdeses failed to report over $350,000 in gross receipts during 2008 – 2011.