Arizona Man Sold Guns to Incite Race War: Feds

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An Arizona man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly selling guns as part of a plan to incite a race war ahead of the 2024 presidential election.

Mark Adams Prieto, 58, from Prescott, Arizona, faces charges of firearms trafficking, transfer of a firearm for use in a hate crime, and possession of an unregistered firearm, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Arizona.

Starting in January 2024, Prieto allegedly began discussing plans with two individuals, who were actually undercover FBI agents, to commit a mass shooting targeting African Americans and other minorities to spark a race war before the election.

Prieto believed these individuals shared his racist views and intentions, the U.S. attorney’s office stated. The planned shooting was to take place at an Atlanta concert on May 14-15.

Prieto sold an AK-style rifle in February and an AR-style rifle in March to one of the undercover agents. The FBI closely monitored his actions during the investigation.

On May 14, Prieto was stopped by law enforcement while driving east from Arizona through New Mexico. He was found with seven firearms and was taken into federal custody. A subsequent search of his home revealed more guns, including an unregistered rifle.

Each conviction carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both. Possession of an unregistered firearm carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both.

The investigation was conducted by the Phoenix FBI field office.

Lauren Irwin
Lauren Irwin
Lauren Irwin is a breaking news reporter covering a wide range of stories that touch on Congress, foreign affairs, state politics and more. Previously, she served as a Washington correspondent, where she covered Arizona politics while earning her Master’s degree from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University.

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