MIAMI, Nov. 14 (UPI) — U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at the Miami International Airport intercepted a group seeking to illegally export handguns and ammunition to Venezuela, court documents show.
A shipment containing empty cases for car batteries originally from Maracaibo, Venezuela, that was addressed to a Miami resident was discovered by agents in April, court, according to documents filed in court.
The Miami home was placed under surveillance and agents saw several suspects delivering handguns to the location. In October, agents saw that guns and ammunition were taken to a shipping company in attempts to export to Venezuela eight handguns, 23,500 rounds of ammunition and 19 high-capacity magazines in some of the empty car battery cases.
Some cases did contain car batteries, but others — although marked as batteries — contained the guns and weapons magazines and ammunition.
Jose Alexander Gutierrez Morales and Alfredo Montilla Hernandez are facing charges related to the case. The person who sent the shipment from Maracaibo to Miami has been identified as Ender Soto. The court documents do not say what Soto’s role was or whether he was arrested or questioned in the case.