Tucson Weapons Smuggler Sentenced To Prison

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(Photo by Nathan O’Neal)

TUCSON – A Tucson man, Ruben Arnulfo Chavarin, was sentenced  to 78 months in prison after pleading guilty to smuggling firearms and ammunition from the United States into Mexico.

According to the Department of Justice, fourteen occasions between December 2010 and February 2011, Chavarin purchased eight firearms and over 21,000 rounds of ammunition in Tucson.

Chavarin provided the firearms and 12,525 rounds of ammunition to co-conspirators to be smuggled out of the United States and into Mexico. On February 11, 2011, Chavarin attempted to personally smuggle 8,700 rounds of ammunition into Mexico, but was apprehended and arrested at the Port of Entry in Douglas, Arizona.

Investigators learned that shortly before his arrest, Chavarin had ordered sixteen AK-47 style rifles and 10,000 rounds of ammunition, which he also intended to smuggle into Mexico.

While under indictment for seven weapons trafficking offenses, Chavarin, now age 31, fled to Mexico, where he remained a fugitive for nine years until his arrest in 2020.

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