Gun dealer pleads to illegal firearms activity

A Lycoming County gun dealer has pleaded to illegal firearms activity and federal income tax evasion.

Franklin D. Lowe, the owner of the All American Gun Shop, admitted that beginning in approximately 2006, he employed an individual who he knew was a convicted felon and prohibited from possessing firearms.

That individual attended an Oct. 4, 2008, real estate auction in Baileyville, Centre County, where he purchased six handguns for Lowe, Assistant U.S. Attorney Wayne P. Samuelson said Tuesday as he outlined the government’s evidence.

Lowe admitted in December 2007 and July 2009 he gave the individual a 9 mm pistol, a rifle and a .38-caliber revolver and did not record their disposition.

The tax count to which Lowe pleaded charged him with filing a return for 2009 claiming a refund of $534,419.

When the IRS told him to file a correct return, he said he under reported $162,918 in income thus creating a tax due of $55,754.

The plea agreement requires him, before sentencing, to file amended tax returns for 2006-09.

Other charges against Lowe, which included illegal activity with an unregistered Uzi, are to be dismissed at sentencing. Lowe remains free on personal recognizance. The investigation continues, Samuelson said.