The ATF said Operation Castaway and Fast and Furious are different. No one has shown that the agency knowingly allowed Crumpler-sold guns out of the country once he was under investigation.
A judge on Oct. 25 ruled that Crumpler’s 30-month sentence should remain intact because he admitted guilt.
Meanwhile, in the wake of Fast and Furious, the ATF took executive action and required firearms dealers in the four Mexico-border states to report multiple rifle purchases.
The rule, however, doesn’t apply to Florida, where Southern gun culture can blend seamlessly with Latin American cartel middle men like Crumpler’s clients.
While selling arms, Crumpler said, he believed he was a “lone ranger” helping arm families, not cartels.
But some of his buyers were pretty shady and bought illegal AR-15-style short barrel rifles that Crumpler converted for them.
At least one was an illegal immigrant. One of his Miami gun-show buyers Jesus Puentes, worked for a Miami-Dade shipping company with strong ties to Venezuela.
Puentes wouldn’t talk much to the feds after he was caught, saying he feared people in his native country of Colombia.
“A life is nothing to them,” he said.
Puentes wouldn’t say if he shipped arms or not, although secretly recorded conversations with Crumpler indicated he did. Both profited.
“It’s not about the guns,” Puentes told agents. “It’s about the money.”
Three years later, at the same gun show where Puentes had been busted, that sentiment was as true now as it was then, but for different reasons.
“You can’t find ammo right now at Wal-Mart or Outdoor World and it’s really expensive online, said Darryl Washington, a Miramar resident shopping Saturday with Hudson.
“This place has the best prices.”