Crime & Justice

South LA gun dealer faces charges for alleged illegal sale

City Attorney Mike Feuer’s office has filed multiple criminal charges against South L.A. firearms dealer Barkochba Botach and a security officer at West Los Angeles College.
City Attorney Mike Feuer’s office has filed multiple criminal charges against South L.A. firearms dealer Barkochba Botach and a security officer at West Los Angeles College.
Los Angeles City Attorney Office

A South Los Angeles gun dealer and a security officer face multiple criminal charges over the illegal sale of gun magazines and firearms that included a weapon connected to a homicide in Riverside County, according to city officials. 

City Attorney Mike Feuer’s office announced charges on Tuesday against Barkochba Botach and Amelia Suarez, a security officer at West Los Angeles College employed as a civilian by the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department.

According to a statement from Feuer’s office, Suarez allegedly bought two Smith & Wesson 9mm pistols from Leimert Park’s Botach Tactical — owned by licensed dealer Barkochba Botach — in October 2014. The shop allegedly sold each firearm with three 17-round magazines.

Botach Tactical allegedly gave Suarez exemption only available to sworn law enforcement personnel, letting her buy large-capacity magazines and more than one handgun during a 30-day period, according to the statement. 

Suarez allegedly transferred one of the guns to a friend earlier this year, skipping proper registration procedures and background checks to legally transfer a firearm in California. The friend then allegedly committed a homicide in Riverside County using the gun, still registered under Suarez’s name.

“I applaud the City Attorney for filing this case and continuing his consistent work to keep Angelenos safe,” Councilmember Paul Krekorian said in the statement. “In one month, law enforcement will have yet another tool to protect the public when my ordinance banning the possession of large capacity magazines in Los Angeles takes effect.”

Arraignment is set for October 15.