Rhode Island Man Charged with Operating ‘Ghost Gun Home Factory’

The man manufactured and sold about 100 guns, according to the Department of Justice. (Photo: U.S. DOJ)

A Rhode Island man has been charged with conspiring to traffic firearms and making false statements after he allegedly operated a “ghost gun home factory” and sold the completed firearms in the Dominican Republic.

Police arrested Robert Alcantara, 34, as he was driving through the Bronx from a Pennsylvania gun show to his home in Rhode Island. Authorities seized parts for 45 “ghost guns” from his car, and a subsequent investigation revealed he had manufactured and sold more than 100 firearms, most of them handguns, according to the New York Times.

“Untraceable ‘ghost guns’ pose a serious threat to public safety,” said Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York. “As alleged, the defendant agreed with others to buy the parts for these firearms, put them together at his home, and then unlawfully sold or attempted to sell over 100 of them. Thanks to our law enforcement partners, the defendant has been arrested, and his deadly ghost gun business has been shut down.”

SEE ALSO: Newsom Threatens Texas-Style Private Lawsuits Against Makers of ‘Ghost Guns, Assault Weapons’

Rhode Island passed a law in 2020 that outlaws possessing, making, or selling homemade firearms, but federal law still allows it. However, federal law does not allow a person to be “in the business” of manufacturing or selling firearms without a license.

Alcantara told federal investigators he did not plan to sell the firearms he had been making. But a search of Alcantara’s phone allegedly revealed that he offered to have his mother transport firearms to the Dominica Republic.

Investigators also took the number of “ghost gun” kits Alcantara purchased as evidence for his intent to sell. The complaint mentions he had been making “substantial numbers” of firearms and details conversations between Alcantara and a retailer of unfinished firearms about his intent to purchase “large numbers” of kits.

SEE ALSO: D.C. Council Quickly Fixes ‘Ghost Gun’ Law after Court Challenge by Heller

Authorities also found photos on his phone of a sanding belt, a hydraulic drill press, and other tools used in assembling the guns, according to the Times.

So-called “ghost guns” have landed in the crosshairs of the anti-gun lobby in recent years. It has always been legal in the United States to manufacture guns at home for personal use, but opponents of the practice claim that modern “ghost gun” kits make the process too easy.

That’s the basis for a new rule proposed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives that would ban “ghost guns” and create a new standard for what counts as a “frame or receiver.” Rather than use the state of manufacture, the new standard would consider the time, skill, and tools needed to turn raw material into frames or receivers.

This latest high-profile arrest appears to be in concert with that larger campaign.

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over six years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Tyler. Got a hot tip? Send him an email at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 20 comments… add one }
  • Bill February 4, 2022, 12:00 pm

    Well my I think everything I own has a serial number phone. Computer etc. My dad had a gun shop when I was a kid and had to have the federal licensing that that requires. I have made a couple of guns over the years and agree that it takes a lot of work and a decent set of tools.

    As a Democrat and a gun owner that has had guns lost and stolen I am not sure this will have an effect on gun violence.

    I still believe if we care about ourselves and our neighbors and help each other out we will have less violence. I still hold that almost anything from a kitchen knife to a golf club can be a weapon in the hands of a person that chooses to use it that way.

  • Jeff February 3, 2022, 10:59 am

    ‘”Ghost Guns” have undoubtedly been used in few crimes and most would be felons have no desire to build a firearm so they can use it to commit crimes. That requires work which most of them are trying to avoid thus their desire to take from others to themselves, their families or their drug habit. Furthermore, for the inexperienced these are not that easy to build due to the fitting required for reliable function. Black market or theft is faster and requires less work. Anyone with any sense should know home manufacture and sale of firearms will draw the ire of local and federal officials as it is only a matter of time before the word gets out and the government is notified, especially with the recent increase in crime throughout the US. This coupled with waiting lists for parts brings us back to theft and black market.

  • DIYinSTL January 23, 2022, 8:48 am

    I am still waiting to hear statistics with cited examples of how many crimes of violence with a firearm were solved where the singular clue to identifying the perpetrator was tracing the firearm with its serial number.

  • Roy January 21, 2022, 6:04 pm

    The majority of lives lost to gun violence were taken by stolen or lost weapons that were owned by careless registered people that didn’t secure their weapons.

  • Jerry McClellan January 14, 2022, 6:32 pm

    I am interested in purchasing a AR-15 Colt Vietnam Commemorative new in a show case-

    • Hondo January 25, 2022, 5:53 am

      Jerry are you lost ?

  • Louis J Ferro III January 13, 2022, 8:39 pm

    Sorry brothers and sisters but looks like were gonna have to ” EMBRACE THE SUCK ” as long as Bidens in the big house. Nothing more can be said because we already said it all . ‘

  • JB January 12, 2022, 10:01 pm

    Ghost Gun is as false a term as Assault Rifle.

    A gun lacking a serial number has no magical features. If you believe the KGB a gun without a serial number is more deadly than one with numbers.

    Another big lie by government.

    Its laughable that a drill press and sanding belt are presented as evil tools of Ghost Gunners. It seems the only contraband the Feds are interested in are small lots of guns that lack serial numbers. Open Borders- No issue there.

    What they are missing are the AK’s being made from junk cars. Several
    AK ‘s can be sourced from a junked F100 with axles providing barrels and bolts. Basic machine tools and an oxy acetylene torch for heat treatment and welding are in most every farm shop today.

    But when Freedom Fighting Patriots are in need of guns they usually get them from dead enemy fighters.

  • Dexter Winslett January 12, 2022, 10:39 am

    Water the tree of liberty.

  • Blue Dog (he/him) January 11, 2022, 3:52 pm

    This isn’t a worst-case scenario where ghost guns are concerned but it is pretty close. How many people have lost their lives to gun violence involving ghost guns produced by this underground manufacturer? How many other ghost gun manufacturers are churning out untraceable firearms that stay closer to home? Arming gangs, terrorists and insurrectionists? These kinds of outlaw gun manufacturing facilities only help highlight the danger of ghost guns and the need for common sense solutions.

    • Kevin January 12, 2022, 12:42 pm

      Well are’nt you a bootlicking un-American freedom hating communist.

      • Jeff January 12, 2022, 8:32 pm

        😅: good one. Going to use it.

    • Jim January 12, 2022, 2:02 pm

      Think about how many of these firearms made it into the hands of terrorists groups like Antifa and BLM.

      • Blue Dog (he/him) January 12, 2022, 4:27 pm

        That would be bad too. Any unregistered firearms are better kept out of the hands of street gangs, whether motivated by greed or politics, and more importantly off American streets.

        I mean, Antifa named itself after the Berlin Wall. The official name of the Berlin Wall was the Antifascist Protection Wall. That is probably why their sigil features a German language slogan.

        • Rick (beep/bop/boop) January 21, 2022, 8:47 am

          Technically, most guns are unregistered.

          As previously noted, the absence of a serial number does nothing to increase the seriousness of the threat. It’s the user (or abuser).

          • Tim February 4, 2022, 8:47 am

            If I was a criminal I would just steal a gun . or buy one from another criminal. Serial number would not matter to me, I’d just sell it to some other criminal. Or toss it in the lake. Serial numbers only matter to those that want to take guns from away law abiding citizens.

    • Ron January 12, 2022, 5:41 pm

      People wouldn’t be going this route if the government wasn’t trying to take all their rights to own guns and protect themselves. This market was almost unheard of until the liberals started the craziness. If they would have left law abiding citizens alone, it would not have come to this.

    • EasyEddie January 21, 2022, 10:39 am

      I have no idea how may people have lost their lives to ghost guns. It’s a fascinating comment. Can you provide the numbers and/or statistics for that?

    • Punisher 6 (your/his royal highness) January 21, 2022, 5:38 pm

      Blue dog turd, trolling gun owners again. How tiresome. You should consider getting a life.
      “outlaw gun manufacturing facilities”: some guy’s basement? Really?
      This has to be a false flag anyway. One can buy a fully functional Glock 19 for less than the cost of the equivalent P80 kit, so it doesn’t make sense to make large quantities of them for sale to criminals, who can probably just buy stolen guns for less money.
      Idiot.

    • D.J. January 24, 2022, 3:01 pm

      CAUTION READERS !!!!! :

      NEOCOMMUNIST ALERT !!!!!

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