BANGOR — A Lewiston man pleaded guilty in federal court Thursday to an illegal gun purchasing conspiracy and to being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Abdullahi Issak Androscoggin County Jail photo

Abdullahi “T” Issak, 26, faces up to 10 years in prison on the felony charge of gun possession by a felon. He also faces up to five years in prison on the felony charge of conspiracy to violate federal firearm laws by having others buy guns for him, called “straw” purchases.

After his release from prison, Issak may be put on supervised release for up to three years.

Prosecutors said in U.S. District Court documents that between December 2021 and July 2022, Issak conspired to have 36 firearms straw purchased for him at federal firearms dealers throughout central and southern Maine.

Straw purchasing typically involves a buyer who can lawfully buy firearms but who provides them to another person who is legally prohibited from purchasing or possessing firearms. This enables a prohibited person to illegally obtain guns and avoid the national background check system, prosecutors said.

Issak told the gun buyers where to buy the firearms and which ones to buy. He gave them cash or drugs in exchange for engaging in the illegal transactions, prosecutors said.


Issak took possession of the firearms from the straw purchasers after each sale. He also pleaded guilty to knowingly possessing one of the firearms, which had been bought for him at a federal firearms dealer in Jay, prosecutors said.

Issak was prohibited from possessing guns because of a 2019 New York felony conviction, according to prosecutors.

The guns illegally obtained by Issak include 18 Glock 9 mm pistols, five Glock .40-caliber pistols, six Glock .45-caliber pistols and assorted other pistols, according to court documents.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated the case.

Issak also faces a felony charge of aggravated assault in state court stemming from an alleged January 2021 attack in which Issak was one of four men who jumped a group of people who had gone to 54 Knox St. to retrieve items belonging to Issak’s girlfriend.

During the fracas, police said, Issak hit one of the victims with either a baseball bat or a billy club-type weapon.

Comments are not available on this story.

filed under: