Shop where Texas school shooter got gun was linked to cartel case

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Shop where Texas school shooter got gun was linked to cartel case

The Texas gun store where teen school shooter Salvador Ramos got an AR-15-style rifle before his rampage was previously part of an ammunition smuggling case involving the Mexican drug cartel, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

In 2009, a businessman from Uvalde’s neighboring town of Eagle Pass was accused of trying to smuggle more than 10,000 rounds of ammunition into Mexico, ICE said.

The firepower was purchased at Oasis Outback LLC in Uvalde — the same gun shop where Ramos got one of the rifles found inside Robb Elementary School after he massacred 21 people there last week.

Businessman Fred Farhat, 48, the owner of Farhat’s Boots and Jeans, paid almost $6,000 cash for more than 10,000 rounds of .223 and 5.56 x 45 mm ammunition in three separate transactions in a three-hour period from Oasis Outback in 2009, authorities said.

“That’s very significant, and it’s close to the border, so you know where it’s going,” said Davy Aguilera, a retired agent with the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms who previously led the ATF office in San Antonio, to the San Antonio Express News last week. “It’s obviously going to a bad guy to sell, transport or to use it. The general public is not going to buy that much.”

Businessman Fred Farhat was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison for smuggling in 2009 with ammunition bought at Oasis.
Fred Farhat was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison for smuggling in 2009 with ammunition bought at Oasis.
REUTERS/Lisa Krantz
Ramos used the weapon to kill 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
Ramos used the weapon to kill 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
REUTERS/Veronica G. Cardenas

Oasis Outback did not break the law with the sale, since there is nothing requiring the store to track or report the purchase of bullets.

After making the ammo purchases with the help of two co-conspirators, Farhat took the ammunition to his business and repacked it, the feds said. He and his married accomplices then tried to drive the ammo across the border into Mexico but crashed with another car before they could make it across the border. The bullets were destined for a Mexican drug cartel, the Express reported, citing court documents.

The wife and Farhat were caught. He was sentenced to five years in prison, while she was sentenced to 30 months in a federal prison. The woman’s husband escaped to Mexico and is still at large.

Oasis was the transfer store where Ramos picked up the gun he bought from a dealer in Georgia.
Oasis was the transfer store where Ramos picked up the gun he bought from a dealer in Georgia.
ZUMAPRESS.com

Oasis was the transfer store for an assault rifle Ramos bought online from a Georgia gun dealer, meaning that the Uvalde shop took the information from him and completed a background check before the sale could be made and it handed over the gun.

The rifle was one of two found inside Robb Elementary after Tuesday’s massacre, when Ramos killed 19 fourth-graders and their two teachers before he was fatally shot by authorities.

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