Marco Garmo, 52, a former San Diego County Sheriff's Department captain, and other four persons were indicted on charges related to illegal gun trafficking and drug trafficking, according the US Attorney's Office for Southern California.
He served as a sheriff's deputy 27 years and was the captain in charge of the Rancho San Diego Station. "This office will not tolerate public servants who abuse their positions of trust for personal gain," Assistant US Attorney Peter Mazza said in a news release. Garmo would engineer "straw" purchases of firearms by certifying he was purchasing them for himself, but in reality, he bought the guns for someone else not in law enforcement, the indictment says.
The 23-count indictment unsealed Friday alleges sheriff's department Lt. Fred Magana, 42; San Diego jeweler Leo Hamel, 62; firearms dealer Giovanni Tilotta, 38; and El Cajon resident Waiel Anton, 35, aided Garmo in operating an illegal gun trafficking business. Between March 2013 and February 2019, Garmo acquired about 146 guns and sold or transferred 104 of them. He was charged with engaging in the business of dealing in firearms without a license, making false statements in acquisition of a firearm, obstruction of justice, aiding and abetting the possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and more other offenses.