New York City just saw its biggest gun bust in history. At least 19 people where involved in selling a nightmare arsenal of over 254 weapons, toting deliveries into the city by bus, using backpacks and suitcases. And Instagram and YouTube helped crack the case.
Aspiring rapper with questionable judgement Matthew Best made the stupid mistake of filming videos featuring cash and firearms in a recording studio in Bed-Stuy and then posting them out on the internet for funsies. Those videos, along with mobile phone wiretaps and purchases by an undercover cop, ultimately led to the series of arrests and and the record-breaking bust announced by Mayor Bloomberg today.
For months, the smugglers had been coming into the city from North and South Carolina on discount charter buses with backpacks and suitcases filled with guns, and then distributing them through a Brooklyn-based ring. Over the course of the 10-month sting, one undercover cop made a whole bunch of purchases, including buying an unassembled semi-automatic rifle hidden inside a horrendously conspicuous zebra suitcase. Apparently it was subtle enough.
Posting evidence of your involvement in a felony gun-smuggling ring online seems like the first thing a criminal should think to avoid. But here’s to hoping they never learn. [CBS New York via Buzzfeed]