WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Attorney General Christopher A. Wray of

the Criminal Division announced today that an Indianapolis resident has been

sentenced to 63 months in prison for his role in a conspiracy to purchase

firearms for prohibited persons.

Dion L. Baugh, a/k/a Daneta Massey, was sentenced this afternoon by Judge

Sarah Evans Barker of the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of

Indiana, on charges of illegal possession of a firearm as a felon, conspiracy

to make false statements in connection with the acquisition of firearms,

aiding and abetting a false statement, and possession with intent to

distribute a controlled substance. Baugh pleaded guilty to the charges in

September 2003.

Baughs sentencing comes one day after another defendant in the straw purchase

conspiracy case, Cecelia D. Land of Indianapolis, was sentenced to three years

probation, which includes five months of home detention with electronic

monitoring, on a guilty plea to a charge of conspiracy to commit false

statements in connection with the acquisition of firearms. The third defendant

charged in an April 2003 indictment, Juan C. Johnson of Indianapolis, also

pleaded guilty at federal court in Indianapolis yesterday to a charge of

aiding and abetting a false statement in acquisition of firearms. Johnson was

sentenced to 51 months in prison.

In their plea agreements, the defendants admitted conspiring from about July

12, 2000 until at least Oct. 16, 2000, to make false statements to licensed

firearms dealers. The defendants admitted that Land and another individual

represented in these statements that they were the actual buyers of the

firearms, when in fact they were purchased for Baugh and Johnson, who are

barred as convicted felons from owning or possessing firearms. As part of the

conspiracy, Land purchased a total of 33 firearms from licensed firearm

dealers on 10 different occasions at the request of Johnson and Baugh.

Although Land certified on federal firearm forms that she was the actual buyer

of the firearms, she then delivered them to Johnson and Baugh, both convicted


This case of lying and buying illustrates one of the key aspects of our

efforts to prevent dangerous felons from acquiring firearms, said Assistant

Attorney General Christopher A. Wray of the Criminal Division. We will not

tolerate guns in their hands, and we will doggedly pursue those who put them


The convictions were the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol,

Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, working with the FBI, the Indianapolis Metro

Drug Task Force, the Indianapolis Police Department, and the Marion County

Sheriffs Office. The case was prosecuted by trial attorneys Jerry Massie and

Nancy Oliver from the Domestic Security Section of the U.S. Department of

Justice, Criminal Division.

Since 2001, Attorney General John Ashcroft has directed U.S. Attorneys to

target individuals who lie in order to obtain a firearm they could not legally

purchase, as well as straw purchasers. In the past three years, federal gun

crime prosecutions have increased by 68 percent. During Fiscal Year 2003,

Project Safe Neighborhoods set a new Justice Department record with nearly 23

percent more defendants charged with gun crimes in one year.

In a separate case last month, the Attorney General announced an indictment

alleging the illegal transfer of firearms from Ohio to street gang members in

East Orange, New Jersey. Hundreds of firearms were allegedly purchased through

straw purchasers who lied on the required background check form.