California Police Raid Felon's Home and Seize 500 Guns

Matthew Moss
by Matthew Moss
The seized firearms layed out (Los Angeles County Sheriffs Dept)

Los Angeles County Sheriffs Department has seized over 500 firearms from a resident in Agua Dulce, north of Los Angeles. The firearms seized include a large number of surplus military bolt actions, shotguns, and hunting rifles. More modern AR-15s and a large number of pistols were also found.

The firearms belong to 60-year-old Manuel Fernandez who was subsequently arrested for being a felon in possession of firearms and a felon in possession of ammunition. 432 firearms were discovered during a search of Fernandez’ property.

Fernandez' sizeable collection laid out at LACSD's Palmdale Sheriff's Station (Los Angeles County Sheriffs Dept)

The firearms seized by police include a HK P7, a Walther P38, various surplus US revolvers, a TT-33, numerous Mosins, SKS’, Mannlichers, lever guns, MAS 36 & 49, various patterns of Mauser, FN-49, several AK-pattern rifles and a number of FALs, AR-15s and other Cold War surplus. Fernandez appears to have been a fairly prolific collector.

A press release from the Los Angeles County Sheriffs Dept Information Bureau stated that detectives are preparing charges for the District Attorney. Supervisor Kathryn Barger, representing Los Angeles County’s 5th District said:

The Summer Enforcement Team was funded by the Board of Supervisors for operations like this with a beneficial impact on public safety for our unincorporated communities throughout the summer months. I applaud the Palmdale Sheriff’s station, the City’s Partners Against Crime and the Department of Justice who worked in conjunction on this effective operation and massive seizure of illegal firearms.

A subsequent search of a female associate of Fernandez’ found another 30 ‘illegal firearms’. The associate was not home during the search and is currently sought by the Los Angeles County Sheriffs Department. A second search of Fernandez’ home on 15 June, found another 91 firearms that had been hidden within the home, bringing the total of weapons seized up to 553.

The LACSD transported the seized firearms in the back of pick ups (Los Angeles County Sheriffs Dept)

Sheriff Jim McDonnell said:

This case is a testament to the community’s involvement in reducing crime and taking guns out of the hands of criminals. The swift response of our Palmdale Sheriff’s Station personnel and the assistance provided by our partners at the California Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives showed the positive result of our campaign ‘See Something, Say Something.’ We are proud of the relationship we have built in the Antelope Valley area as we continue to build trust with the communities we serve.

The large number of firearms seized means that the sheriff’s department called on the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) for assistance in tracing the purchase origination of the illegally purchased weapons. For the time being the firearms will be retained as evidence pending the cases’ court hearings. Fernandez was released on a $35,000 bond the day after his arrest.

Sources: 1 2

Matthew Moss
Matthew Moss

Managing Editor: & Overt Matt is a British historian specialising in small arms development and military history. He has written several books and for a variety of publications in both the US and UK. Matt is also runs The Armourer's Bench, a video series on historically significant small arms. Here on TFB he covers product and current military small arms news. Reach Matt at:

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2 of 228 comments
  • Coyotehunter Coyotehunter on Jun 26, 2018

    How many of these weapons had jumped up and killed somebody????...looked more like a collector than a mass murderer....only in commiefornia.

  • Davida Davida on Jun 27, 2018

    This artical does tell more facts then others i saw but still lacks enough to get to the heart of the issues involved to deturmine is the law b/s in this case ?

    how long did they stay out of 'other ' trouble not to be 'discovered '

    Theres a whole not more to this then told or maybe even known .
    looks and smells like a ligit collection of a collector .
    other questions how much ammo is on hand ?
    whats that say on no possable bad intent prehaps?
    what was and when was the disquallifying 'offence' ?
    a lot of questions
    need answers to see where fair and reasionalbe should stand .
    Too much speculation in discussion of nefarious suspection not proved conclusive.
    So far, this case does ring of grandstanding .
    I"m willing to see where it goes , how , to what cost, what benifit, ect before decideing this one