Enfant terrible of arms dealing in prison after sting operation

A little over three years ago, Efraim Diveroli was a precocious 22-year-old arms dealer celebrating landing what must be one of the more extraordinary pieces of business to come out of the war in Afghanistan: the sale for $300m (£195m) of 40-year-old Chinese bullets to the American military. Yesterday, he was cooling his heels in a Florida jail cell after being arrested with just a few hundred rounds of ammunition in the back of his car.

Mr Diveroli's arrest marks the conclusion of an extraordinary descent from the cusp of moguldom to a future that may very well lie in prison. His downfall began when he was accused of trying to sell banned weapons, and pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge. Now 24, a little older but apparently no wiser, he faces fresh accusations of possessing firearms as a convicted felon. If the federal authorities are right, this young man just can't quit when it comes to guns and bullets. As he is caught on tape telling one of the agents who arrested him: "Once a gun-runner, always a gun-runner."

At first glance, Mr Diveroli's entry in to the complex world of arms dealing was an extraordinary success. But before very long after it had entered into the deal, the Pentagon had reason to be very unhappy with its new supplier. With a little repackaging and obscuring of labelling, Mr Diveroli had shipped decades-old Kalashnikovs as well as banned and thoroughly degraded ammunition from China, procured via Albania, that dated back to the Sixties.

His guilty plea to a conspiracy charge as a result of that saga left him on the streets pending sentencing in November. But there were conditions set by the judge: he was to remain in the county area of Miami and under no circumstances was he to touch a gun. Did he comply? Not quite, say agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives which had begun investigating him again earlier this year.

The cuffs went on again last week after Mr Diveroli met with undercover agents of the Bureau north of his restricted area of movement around Miami, looked at some guns with them and, in his enthusiasm, rushed to Wal-Mart to buy bullets so they might go shooting. Then he was arrested. Facing charges of possessing firearms as a convicted felon, he is now in custody without bail.

Conversations with undercover agents taped over recent weeks include snippets about how the defendant "was shooting at the range" one day and how on another "he and a friend were recently hunting alligators, white tail deer and hogs in the Everglades" with a .50-calibre black-powder rifle. The violation of his court conditions was therefore flagrant, the government contends.

More serious for Mr Diveroli, however, is an 18-page affidavit saying that his return to the world of firearms is more than just recreational. Agents claim he has set up a front company called Advanced Munitions to solicit new gun-trading business.

The court filings describe Mr Diveroli telling an agent that he was a consultant for a company looking to shift "100-round ammunition drums" from a South Korean factory to the US at the rate of roughly 120,000 units annually. On another occasion he allegedly boasted having rifle cartridges for sale. The new complaint says that Mr Diveroli "has a large stock of ammunition in the United States" and "has been unloading his ammunition the last couple of years".

Mr Diveroli's first scam with the Pentagon was blown open initially in 2008 by an investigation begun by The New York Times. The US army rescinded all dealings with him and his company AEY Inc. The embarrassment was all the more acute because the Pentagon had been duped by a man barely old enough to fight.

Suggested Topics
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
Sport
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
News
Ricky Gervais performs stand-up
people
Arts and Entertainment
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Year 5 Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Randstad Education Ltd are seeking KS...

Year 6 Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Randstad Education Ltd are seeking KS...

Automation Test Lead (C#, Selenium, SQL, XML, Web-Services)

£50000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Automation Tes...

Business Anaylst

£60000 - £75000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: Business Anal...

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering