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Posted: 5/8/2004 8:51:05 PM EST
It seems that charges have been filed against Mike Kelly and I have been identified as a financial victim (according to this letter he plead not guilty). This lets me follow the case via a call-in number. Trial date is 6/21. Does anyone here follow the story or want updates?.
Link Posted: 5/8/2004 9:15:24 PM EST
Count me in.
Link Posted: 5/8/2004 9:20:56 PM EST
I got one of those letters. Don't hold your breathe on ever getting any compensation out of the Kelly's ! Just have to get some satisfaction with them going to jail
Link Posted: 5/8/2004 9:25:49 PM EST
Sorry, I am a n00b, who is Mike Kelly and what did he do?
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:20:54 AM EST
Count me in too, he got my money.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:27:33 AM EST
MisterFloppy:
He built forged M14 recievers that the ATF later decided were machine guns. The ATF tracked down every reciever and confiscated them.

Kharn
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:57:51 AM EST

Originally Posted By Kharn:
MisterFloppy:
He built forged M14 recievers that the ATF later decided were machine guns. The ATF tracked down every reciever and confiscated them.

Kharn



And you're mad at HIM?
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 4:52:31 AM EST

Originally Posted By captainpooby:

Originally Posted By Kharn:
MisterFloppy:
He built forged M14 recievers that the ATF later decided were machine guns. The ATF tracked down every reciever and confiscated them.

Kharn



And you're mad at HIM?



captainpooby --> LOL!
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 5:19:52 AM EST
[Last Edit: 5/9/2004 2:10:45 PM EST by Jim_Dandy]

And you're mad at HIM?

He took demilled M14 receivers and KNOWING the BATFE's policy of "once a machinegun, always a machinegun," rewelded them and sold them as legal Title I firearms. The BATFE found out and confiscated all of the receivers, most of them complete firearms. Everyone who bought one was ass-out on getting a refund as far as MKS was concerned.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 1:17:35 PM EST
Ditto what Jim_Dandy said: Mike Kelly sold lots of people a product he should have known was illegal. Lots of folks sounded the alarm that his receivers were illegal and likely to be found so by BATF at some point, but they were poo-poo'ed by the MKS supporters as 'alarmist'. Guess what? Lots of folks are now out $$$. I don't see this as being BATF's fault. Given their well-known position of 'once a machinegun, always a machinegun' Kelly should have gotten a clear decision in writing from them before selling his wares to the public.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:06:43 PM EST
CAVEAT EMPTOR!
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:38:54 PM EST
if i was on the jury i would let him walk, they were not machine guns when he sold them, i would also demand the govt replace the missing rifles to the consumers who have had them confiscated
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:46:52 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/9/2004 2:52:13 PM EST by captainpooby]
Sounds to me like he took a bunch of cut up metal parts and welded them into M1A recievers and got fucked over by retro action from the BATFE.
Once a machine gun, then cut up metal parts. Then a legal reciever. Thats how I see it. If I bought one I would be pissed at the BATFE, not Mike Kelly. I see him as an ingenious entrepreneur not a scamming cheat. He was trying to provide people with a legal product that they wanted.
By the "once a machine gun, always a machine gun" theory, if you melt them down and recast them you still have machine guns. Thats fucked up.

ETA: Whats he charged with, fraud? Illegal manufacture and sale of MGs?
Seems to me if its the latter we should be contributing to his legal defence fund in hopes of a favorable outcome.
Man, sometimes I dont get gunowners.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:48:37 PM EST
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:53:09 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/9/2004 3:05:06 PM EST by Andreuha]
I'm kind of rooting for this guy... A chance he can get the ATFs "once a machinegun" overturned. Even though that was a pretty messed up thing he did.

Edit: Count me in (on updates)!
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 3:28:42 PM EST
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 3:41:24 PM EST

Originally Posted By avengeusa:
if i was on the jury i would let him walk, they were not machine guns when he sold them, i would also demand the govt replace the missing rifles to the consumers who have had them confiscated



That would be nice in an alternative universe where the jury hears all the facts and decides what should happen.

In our current system, all you would be determining is if Kelly is guilty of commiting fraud. No one would be asking you if these should be made illegal or if the 2nd A supercedes or any of that.

As to fraud, based on the fact Kelly was savvy enough to buy these once cut recievers, had the knowhow to reweld them, had an FFL to sell them, and WAS asked many times if he had cleared this with the ATF, then I would have to say he is guilty of either fraud, negligence, or outright business incompetence. Pick one. Fraud jumps to mind as the most obvious answer.

If I were the judge/jury, I would ONLY allow him to skate if he purchased the same number of recievers he sold from a reputable maker (like Armscorp) and sent them to every buyer to make good. If he can't do that - jail time.



Link Posted: 5/9/2004 5:03:22 PM EST
Actually the ATF paperwork I saw when I turned mine in said they also had no liscense to manufacture firearms on top of the improper demilled recvrs.
The Kelly's continued to take peoples money for recvrs and rifles even when they knew the ATF was investigating their product and they might be seized....
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 5:20:05 PM EST

if i was on the jury i would let him walk, they were not machine guns when he sold them, i would also demand the govt replace the missing rifles to the consumers who have had them confiscated

A sharp U.S. Attorney wouldn't let you, or any other gun owner serve on this jury. They'll poll the jury pool and bounce every gun owner, NRA member, 2nd Amendment supporter, etc. Then they'll bar any reference to the manufacture of legal semi-automatic firearms so that the argument simply becomes Mike Kelly reassembled unregistered machineguns and sold them via illegal means, without paying proper taxes, to unqualified individuals in violation of the NFA. Believe it.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 5:28:14 PM EST
[chior]what Kelly did was fraudulent and totally wrong, but this bullshit shouldn't be an issue because of the 2nd Amendment rights....too bad the 2A is just fiction[/chior]
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 11:22:46 PM EST
It is really nice to see that many of you would let him walk or sit and denounce the ATF for your "rights".

I got to see the ATF paperwork as they took my reciever. Good old dirtbag Kelly, did not have a manufactors liscense. He did not have ATF approval to make a rewelded reciever, insead of submitting two for approval he just started selling them. To top that off, he made his OWN approval letter saying he had the OK. He lied about where he got the recievers he rewelded and he lied about them being properly demilled. He even kept two bound books and "forgot" to mention the second one until the second or third ATF visit. The guy was a shitball from the word go. To top it off he sold 25 recievers to the same guy, this guy in turn tried to sell them as "REAL" M-14's not rewelds.

To some of you he may be a militia hero or whatever, but to the rest of the world he was a dirtbag who defrauded a few hundred people, I hope he rots in prison.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 3:56:48 AM EST
i did not know he had no license to manufacture, but as far as a rewld which would not function as a machine gun he should not be found guilty of that, maybee fraud or whatever, but not som baloney atf law that states a semi is a machine gun
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 4:08:02 AM EST

Originally Posted By Jim_Dandy:

if i was on the jury i would let him walk, they were not machine guns when he sold them, i would also demand the govt replace the missing rifles to the consumers who have had them confiscated

A sharp U.S. Attorney wouldn't let you, or any other gun owner serve on this jury. They'll poll the jury pool and bounce every gun owner, NRA member, 2nd Amendment supporter, etc. Then they'll bar any reference to the manufacture of legal semi-automatic firearms so that the argument simply becomes Mike Kelly reassembled unregistered machineguns and sold them via illegal means, without paying proper taxes, to unqualified individuals in violation of the NFA. Believe it.



Yeah, but it won't take a very smart defense lawyer to let the cat out of the bag when some ATF agent testifies that these were machine guns. "What is a 'machine gun?'" "How many rounds did these weapons fire with each pull of the trigger?" "So how this is a machine gun?" "How much thrust per squeeze did these rifles yield?" [sorry, couldn't resist]
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 5:36:59 AM EST
[Last Edit: 5/10/2004 5:39:27 AM EST by Jim_Dandy]

Yeah, but it won't take a very smart defense lawyer to let the cat out of the bag when some ATF agent testifies that these were machine guns. "What is a 'machine gun?'" "How many rounds did these weapons fire with each pull of the trigger?" "So how this is a machine gun?" "How much thrust per squeeze did these rifles yield?" [sorry, couldn't resist]

How much time have you spent in and around a federal courtroom? Your line of thinking doesn't reflect reality, nor is it plausible. There will be no line of questioning as you are imagining. This isn't "The Practice," this isn't "Matlock," it's not "L.A. Law," and it sure as hell ain't "Perry Mason." The feds have a 98% conviction rate. They only take cases they can manipulate and win . There won't be any definition of what a machinegun is and how many rounds these were capable of firing. The only argument will be that Mike Kelly obtained some cut up machinegun receivers and reassembled them without paying taxes and sold them to unqualified individuals (meaning someone who did NOT file a Form 4) in violation of the NFA. Plain and simple.

If Mike Kelly has a good attorney, he'll cut a deal. A little dose of reality. Sorry, couldn't resist.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 5:37:10 AM EST

Originally Posted By avengeusa:
i did not know he had no license to manufacture, but as far as a rewld which would not function as a machine gun he should not be found guilty of that, maybee fraud or whatever, but not som baloney atf law that states a semi is a machine gun



Avenge,

The way the govt sees machineguns and the way you and I see them is a bit different. Their position is that the part of the weapon they define as the machinegun (the reciever in the case of M14s) is ALWAYS a machinegun. I am not an expert on M14s, but I believe there is a slight difference between them and the modern M1A type semi only receivers. So, even though these rifles might have been assembled as semi only, they might have been suitable for full auto fire with addition of some easily obtainable parts. That is why they take that position.

It doesn't always make sense though. But that is the ATF. They define - we obey.

In general it isn't unclear. If a gun was a real select fire M14, that reciever must be destroyed or one of the few registered transferable ones in the USA. You can import these rifles, but the reciever must be torch cut in a bonded warehouse first. So you can resell the parts.

Kelly took some of these torch cut recievers and rewelded them. So, pretty clearly he created machineguns in the eyes of the law even if the parts to make them full autoi were missing. This is even if he modified them to the parts could not be added. If he wanted to play that game he should have gotten a ruling from ATF well before he started selling them. Most M14/M1A buyers at that time were warning each other to watch out for this. But, some chanced it. And got burned.

For myself - I got a Springfield Armory. Paid a bit more but the ATF doesn't want mine back.
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 5:20:36 PM EST

Originally Posted By CAMPYBOB:
what happened to the 'replacement' billet machined receivers he was manufacturing?



I've out getting some parts removed, but I'm back now.

First, Mr Kelly was up to several different activities. The "re-welds" were an earlier business activity that involved taking torch-cut M14 recievers and welding them back together. I remember seeing either a letter or a document on his website refencing a legal opinion or court judgement that since the recievers had been de-milled, it was the (my words here) legal equivalent of taking alternator brackets that just happened to be the right shape and welding them together to make recievers. He was transitioning into the manufacture and sale of new forged recievers and I purchased one of those. He also had an offer to exchange any prior re-weld for a new receiver.

I called the number and one of the menu options detailed the charges. Holy Cow!

I may not have it completely correct but here is the gist of what he is facing.

3 counts firearms unlawful sale or delivery to out of state residents.

2 counts unlawful manufacture, possesion or transportation of semiautomatic rifle.

10 counts mail fraud, frauds and swindles.

2 counts engaging in business as dealer or importer without proper tax.

29 counts of recieving or possesing firearms not registered in nfrtr.

162 counts transfer of firearm in violation of Title 26, chapter 53

88 counts making firearm in violation of of Title 26, chapter 53


As I recall, he had shipped out about 300 (new) recievers. I wonder if 162 is the number recovered.
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