- Associated Press - Thursday, August 13, 2015

GREENBELT, Md. (AP) - A Virginia man has been sentenced to a year and a half in prison for attempting to illegally export guns and gun sights to Lebanon.

Sam Rafic Ghanem of Springfield, Virginia, was sentenced Wednesday by a federal court judge in Maryland and ordered to pay a nearly $71,000 fine. Ghanem, who was born in Lebanon, owned and operated a freight forwarding and shipping service in District Heights, Maryland. Prosecutors say he attempted to export 10 pistols, 10 AR-15 rifles and 18 optic gun sights by concealing them inside the cut-up parts of salvaged vehicles and then loading them into a shipping container. The items were provided by an FBI source.

Ghanem’s attorney, Robert Bonsib, said his client maintains his innocence but called the sentence fair considering the jury verdict and government’s request for a longer sentence.



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