Brooklyn man admits possessing machinegun

A Brooklyn man with prior felony convictions today admitted illegally possessing a machinegun when the car he was in was stopped by police in Hunterdon County last year.

Christian Cordero-Gotay, 29, of Brooklyn, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton to an information charging him with one count of possession of a machinegun, one count of possession of ammunition by a convicted felon, and one count of possession of a machinegun not registered to him in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record.

According to Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig, at about 1:30 a.m. on Aug. 31, 2020, officers of the Clinton Township Police Department conducted a motor vehicle stop of a vehicle occupied by Cordero-Gotay and Genesis Bertefabian.

Upon approach, the officers detected an odor of burnt marijuana coming from the vehicle.

Pursuant to a search of the vehicle, an officer observed a loaded Glock magazine under the driver’s seat.

The officers attempted to place Cordero-Gotay and Bertefabian under arrest, but Cordero-Gotay resisted arrest and Bertefabian got in the vehicle and drove away.

A few minutes later, Bertefabian crashed into the side of a building.

Bertefabian then exited the vehicle and walked into a wooded area behind the building.

Police officers conducted a search of the wooded areaand found a 9 mm Glock-type semiautomatic firearm.

Law enforcement officials determined that the firearm was fitted with a conversion device commonly referred to as a “Glock Switch,” which has the effect of converting a semiautomatic Glock pistol into a machinegun.

After obtaining a search warrant for the vehicle, law enforcement recovered two high-capacity magazines loaded with 9mm ammunition.

Each of the three charges carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 23, 2021.

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