A Riverside man and self-proclaimed “Doomsday Prepper” who possessed an arsenal of weapons and thousands of rounds of ammunition has plead guilty in federal court to being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition, officials announced Wednesday.
Hector Mariscal, 41, pleaded guilty Monday in federal court and admitted that he unlawfully possessed semi-automatic firearms, shotguns, rifles, a receiver for an AR-15 machine gun, and various types of ammunition.
Mariscal also admitted in court that he was not legally allowed to possess these items because he previously sustained felony convictions for burglary – and being a felon in possession of a firearm.
According to court documents, law enforcement officers executed a federal search warrant at Mariscal’s residence near Riverside City College in June.
During the search, officials said law enforcement seized firearms, thousands of rounds of ammunition, tasers, silencers, body armor and a flare launcher.
According to an affidavit filed in the case, on the date of the search, Mariscal admitted that he was a convicted felon who illegally possessed multiple firearms and thousands of rounds of ammunition.
Mariscal repeatedly described himself as a “Doomsday Prepper,” who in connection with his preparation also collected knives and other dangerous items, including a flare launcher.
According to the affidavit, Mariscal told investigators that he regularly goes to the swap meet to obtain firearms and other dangerous weapons, stating, “You’d be surprised what you can find at a swap meet.”
“This defendant’s continued affinity for guns has earned him a second felony conviction, this time for illegally possessing firearms,” said U.S. Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “The defendant flagrantly violated laws designed to protect the public by keeping firearms away from convicted felons, and now he faces a substantial period of time in a federal prison.”
The case against Mariscal is the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
“Mr. Mariscal previously admitted to a felony conviction for the same conduct,” said ATF Special Agent in Charge Eric D. Harden. “ATF works with our partner agencies to identify and prosecute those that choose to repeatedly circumvent regulations designed to protect our communities from gun violence.”
U.S. District Judge Manuel Real scheduled sentencing for Nov. 21. Mariscal faces up to 10 years in prison, according to officials.
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