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Crime

No Guns Founder Arrested on Gun Charges

11:11 AM PDT on June 5, 2007

Taco Crime Blotter

The Los Angeles Times reports:

Former 18th Street gang member Hector "Weasel" Marroquin for years was celebrated and rewarded for having turned his life around.

He founded the anti-gang organization NO GUNS and received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the city for his efforts to help steer Latino youths away from a life of crime. His champions included former state Sen. Tom Hayden.

Marroquin, 51, was arrested Thursday at his Downey home on charges of selling several guns, including a machine gun, two silencers and two rifles, to undercover officers. He bailed out of Los Angeles County jail Thursday night and could not be reached for comment.

In 1998, Hector Sr. was tried on illegal weapons charges and acquitted. While all the facts are not yet known about the current case, there is mounting evidence that NO GUNS was perhaps an organization not completely on the up-and-up-- last summer, NO GUNS lost its city contract after it was discovered that Marroquin had used funds to hire too many of his family members, and earlier last year, Marroquin's son, "Little Weasel", himself a principal in NO GUNS, was arrested in connection with an armed home-invasion robbery. It was roughly two years ago that the Times portrayed Marroquin as someone who had turned his life around years ago, and reported that the Marroquins have helped more than 60 former gang members and convicted felons find construction jobs.

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