A Carmichael man arrested last month on weapons charges has been indicted by a federal grand jury on four counts of suspicion of illegally possessing a machine gun and selling weapons and explosives.
James Christopher Malcolm, 29, has been held without bail at the Sacramento County jail since federal agents arrested him on the evening of May 4, after a two-month undercover operation found evidence that he had boasted about converting pistols and rifles to fully automatic weapons and was making explosives and selling poison, authorities say.
He was held on a criminal complaint, and an indictment filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Sacramento charges him with four counts – transferring explosive materials, unlawful dealing in firearms and two counts of possession and transfer of a machine gun. Three of the counts each carry the possibility of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine; the unlawful dealing in firearms count carries a penalty of up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Malcolm, who is scheduled to return to court next week, lost a bid last month to be released pending trial after a judge decided the weapons found in his possession made release too dangerous.
Court documents say authorities received a tip that Malcolm was converting weapons to fully automatic and was distributing explosives and poison. Undercover agents met with him twice to purchase weapons and ammunition, telling Malcolm they supplied weapons to Mexican drug traffickers and needed explosives to guard a Northern California marijuana-growing operation, court documents state.
Agents have searched his Carmichael home on Garfield Avenue as well as two self-storage units he rented, although they have yet to disclose what was found.