Salisbury Man and Former Tyngsborough Police Officer Pleads Guilty to Gun Charges, Bank Fraud

File photograph. (Image licensed by Ingram Image.)

A Salisbury resident and former Tyngsborough police officer who hid the source of Chinese money to build a large indoor shooting range, among other violations, pleaded guilty last Thursday.

Daniel Whitman, 37, pleaded guilty to bank fraud conspiracy, two counts of bank fraud, two counts of making false statements to a bank, possession of an unregistered firearm, conspiracy to violate provisions of the National Firearms Act, making a firearm in violation of the law and transferring a firearm in violation of the law.

U.S. District Court Judge Patti B. Saris in Boston scheduled sentencing for next Jan. 27. Whitman was arrested and charged in January 2021 and was later indicted by a federal grand jury in June 2021.

Whitman was a police officer with the Tyngsborough Police Department and the owner and principal manager of Hitman Firearms, a retail gun shop in Tyngsborough. According to court documents, Whitman and Bin Lu sought to build the shooting range, which would serve regional and international customers, and offer shooting clinics and other services. They pair brought in a Chinese investor, who contributed several million dollars. In applying for loans, prosecutors said, Whitman hid the true source of their initial funding and filed false documents in connection with their loan applications.

In addition, according to court documents, Whitman knowingly made, possessed and transferred firearms that had been modified by the addition of stocks and short barrels, resulting in their classification as short-barreled rifles under the law. These were not properly registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record as required and Whitman did not pay applicable taxes or fulfill other legal requirements.

In June 2021, Lu pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and possession of an unregistered firearm. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 13.

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