On the same day Governor Phil Murphy made a push to have all gun related legislation, pro and anti, brought to the house and senate for votes as part of a renewed effort to crack down on gun violence, a Rahway man was sentenced to prison for gun trafficking charges.

A Rahway man and two others dealt more than 24 firearms -- shotguns, rifles, and other firearms that could hold large-capacity magazines -- between December of 2019 and June of 2020 across the city of Elizabeth, according to U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger.

For his role in the distribution of guns in New Jersey, 26-year-old Mark "Skrap" Hernandez was was sentenced today to 7-years (84 months) in prison which follows a previously entered guilty plea for the charges of conspiracy to unlawfully deal in firearms, unlawfully dealing in firearms, and possession of firearms and ammunition by a convicted felon which came on a unlawful possession of a handgun charge in New Jersey.

Even before this, he was barred from possession of firearms and ammunition.

Attorney Sellinger said that Hernandez unlawfully got several of those guns and then supplied them to Clifford Behler, 43, and Francis Zyla, 56, to be redistributed.

Get our free mobile app

In addition to his 7-years in prison, Hernandez was sentenced to three years of supervised release.

Meanwhile, Behler previously pleaded guilty to narcotics and firearms offenses, and was sentenced to five-years in prison in December 2021, and the case against Zyla is still pending.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger announced the case was investigated by special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Newark Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey L. Matthews; special agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Newark Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Susan A. Gibson; the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of William A. Daniel; and the New Jersey State Police, under the direction of Col. Patrick J. Callahan.

 

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Samantha C. Fasanello and Robert Frazer U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Unit in Newark.

Defense counsel: Brooke M. Barnett Esq., Newark.

The most heinous New Jersey murders that shook our communities

Here are New Jersey's Most Wanted Criminals

New Jersey's Missing Children