Former Berkeley County lieutenant sells guns illegally

Tony Allen Riley, 62, of Goose Creek

Tony Allen Riley, 62, of Goose Creek, was sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Charleston for selling a firearm to a person he knew could not purchase a gun.

Senior United States District Judge Margaret B. Seymour sentenced Riley to twelve months and one day imprisonment, to be followed by one year of supervised release.

Evidence showed in December 2013, on two separate occasions, Riley sold firearms to a person Riley knew to be under indictment for a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year.

At the time Riley sold the firearms, he was employed as a deputy with the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office, where he had previously held the rank of lieutenant prior to his retirement in 2008 and subsequent return to the Sheriff’s Office in 2009.

“Community policing is a time-honored practice here in our state.  Effective community policing is founded on both the desire of officers to protect and serve and the trust of the people the officers serve.  That trust is critical to both the safety of our officers and our communities.  For this reason, both the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office, working hand-in-hand with the Department of Justice, will give top priority to prosecuting those few officers who commit abuses, dishonoring their badge and the bravery and integrity of their fellow officers,” Acting U.S. Attorney Beth Drake said Wednesday.

The case was investigated by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).  Assistant United States Attorney Nick Bianchi of the Charleston office prosecuted the case.


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