Monroe County Couple Charged with Straw Purchasing and Stockpiling Firearms

August 17, 2023 | Topic: Criminal

30 guns seized including 4 ghost guns and multiple assault rifles

HARRISBURG—Attorney General Michelle Henry announced the arrests of two Monroe County residents regarding a straw purchasing operation that involved a woman buying guns for her boyfriend, a convicted felon.

Melissa Saldana and Ramon Roldan, Jr., both age 39, are charged with numerous violations of the Uniform Firearms Act, and false swearing. Roldan is incarcerated on $250,000 bail; Saldana’s bail was set at $20,000.

An investigation by the Office of Attorney General found that Saldana repeatedly bought firearms for her boyfriend, Roldan, who was prohibited from having firearms due to multiple felony convictions.

“Every straw purchase is a dangerous act that threatens public safety by placing guns into hands of those prohibited by law from having them,” Attorney General Henry said. “This couple deliberately tried to circumvent the system by obtaining dozens of firearms, including ghost guns and assault rifles, for a convicted felon and inconspicuously stashing them in a storage unit. Thanks to the hard work of our Gun Violence Task Force and our law enforcement partners, these individuals will be held accountable for their crimes and no longer pose a risk to our communities ”

The Monroe County District Attorney’s Office will prosecute this case.

“Our office looks forward to working collectively with the Attorney General’s Office during this investigation and the handling of this prosecution,” Monroe County Assistant District Attorney Christy Schlottman said. “Our office will prosecute this case thoroughly. We intend to hold these individuals accountable for their actions in order to keep residents of Monroe County and this Commonwealth safe from gun traffickers and to get illegal guns off our streets.”

The investigation found that Saldana straw purchased at least 20 firearms in the past two years, many of the same make and model. When asked about the guns, she did not know the makes and models and lied about their locations.

The firearms were found in a storage unit rented by Roldan. When agents searched the storage unit they seized 27 firearms, and two more as the result of Roldan’s cooperation at the time of his arrest. One firearm was recovered from Saldana.

The confiscated firearms included 22 handguns purchased by Saldana, among them four polymer80 guns (ghost guns), as well as multiple assault style rifles with suppressors.

This case was investigated by the Office of Attorney General’s Gun Violence Task Force with assistance from the Pennsylvania State Police Crime Detectives and Patrol.

All charges discussed are accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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