Found Guilty of Arms Smuggling

Last week, a military officer from Fort Liberty was found guilty of arms smuggling to West Africa and making false statements to a grand jury. Major Kojo Owusu Dartey, aged 42, could receive up to 20 months in prison at his sentencing in June. His convictions from the April 23 verdict include unauthorized firearm dealings, undisclosed firearm deliveries, smuggling, illegal firearm exports, lying to a U.S. agency, false court declarations, and conspiracy.

The trial, which lasted four days, resulted in Dartey being acquitted of obstructing justice and five charges of lying to gun dealers.

U.S. Attorney Michael Easley for North Carolina’s Eastern District detailed that Dartey acquired seven guns around Fort Liberty between June 28 and July 2, 2021. He also coordinated with a staff sergeant at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to buy and send three additional guns to him in North Carolina.

The accusation further states that the staff sergeant bought the arms from the Fort Campbell PX while Dartey, nicknamed Killa K, bought others at the Fort Liberty PX and various gun and pawn shops in Fayetteville.

A Variety of Weapons and Suppressors Were Seized

Dartey concealed the assortment of weapons — which included several handguns, an AR15, 50-round magazines, suppressors, and a combat shotgun — within rice and household items in blue barrels. These were then illegally exported aboard a container ship from Baltimore’s Port to Tema, Ghana.

The firearms were intercepted by authorities in Ghana, who then notified the DEA attache in Ghana and the ATF in Baltimore, as per the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Additionally, Dartey was a witness in a separate case regarding a marriage fraud scheme involving 16 defendants, comprising soldiers at Fort Liberty and Ghanaian citizens, which he had previously reported to authorities.