Simeon D. Mokhiber, a Niagara Falls, N.Y. Army veteran, was convicted April 21 on three felony counts of possessing “large capacity ammunition feeding devices” under Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s SAFE Act.
Mokhiber served nine years in the U.S. Army and participated in the 2003 invasion of Iraq. He subsequently worked as an armed private security contractor in Iraq and Afghanistan and was formerly licensed as an armed security guard in New York. He is the father of an eight-year-old with disabilities and had no prior criminal record.
Mokhiber was pulled over for speeding in April 2016. Although Mokhiber had not been drinking, police performed field sobriety tests. When Mokhiber requested that officers turn on body cameras, he was arrested, and his vehicle was searched without a warrant.
Police found three 17-round Glock handgun magazines in a locked container that was opened without Mokhiber’s consent. Although Mokhiber was the owner of a licensed and registered handgun, no gun was present in the vehicle at the time of the traffic stop – only the magazines.
Under New York law, possessing an “ammunition feeding device” capable of holding more than 10 rounds is a felony carrying a maximum penalty of seven years in prison.
If Mokhiber is sentenced consecutively, he faces up to 21 years in state prison for possession of the magazines.