Fort Worth man gets 9 years in prison, trafficked guns to convicted felons in California

A Fort Worth man, who trafficked firearms from Texas to convicted felons in California, was sentenced to nine years in prison, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Leigha Simonton announced in a news release Friday.

Justin Douangmala, 41, was charged in July and pleaded guilty in August to conspiracy to traffic firearms.

He is among the first defendants in the Northern District of Texas to plead guilty to an offense outlined in the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, signed into law by President Joe Biden in June 2022, according to the release.

The act is designed to provide an “unprecedented investment in mental health funding for children and families across the country,” the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration says. It was enacted after mass shootings occurred in Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo, New York, including provisions related to firearms and education, according to the Congressional Research Service.

During a search warrant at Douangmala’s Fort Worth residence, several firearms and drugs were found, according to court documents. Cell phone conversations also revealed Douangmala and others discussing silencers and firearms. In a message, an individual asked Douangmala to send him pictures of firearms he had access to, the release states.

He admitted to sending multiple firearms from Texas to a convicted felon in California.

At the sentencing hearing, it was shown that Douangmala also received large quantities of drugs in exchange for the firearms he was sending to the felon in California, according to the release.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, & Explosives’ Dallas Field Division and Fort Worth Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Levi Thomas prosecuted the case.