A former Hempstead resident was sentenced Wednesday in federal court in Central Islip to nearly five years in prison for his role in a scheme to traffic illegal guns from Georgia to Long Island, at least one of which was linked to a 2020 homicide.
U.S. District Judge Joan M. Azrack sentenced Dennis Wolfolk, 30, now of Marietta, Georgia, to 57 months in prison after he pleaded guilty in May to being a felon in possession of two 9 mm handguns.
“The so-called gun trafficking 'Iron Pipeline' from Georgia to Long Island took a detour to a federal courtroom for Wolfolk, a convicted felon, who was punished today for his continuing disregard of the law and serious criminal conduct that resulted in guns being found in the hands of juveniles, a parolee, criminals and at the scene of a murder,” said Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.
Glenn Obedin, Wolfolk's Central Islip-based defense attorney, did not respond to a request for comment.
Wolfolk was indicted last year, along with Patrick Polidore, 33, of Powder Springs, Georgia, for transporting 27 guns across state lines between 2020 and 2021 — many of which were recovered at local crime scenes, federal prosecutors said.
Polidore pleaded guilty in September 2023 to making false statements to acquire firearms and is awaiting sentencing.
Prosecutors said Polidore operated as a "straw buyer" of 27 handguns, purchased in rapid succession between October and December 2020 from retailers in Georgia, while falsely stating on federal forms that he was the intended recipient of the weapons.
In reality, Polidore was working with Wolfolk — who, as a convicted felon, was legally prohibited from possessing a firearm — to traffic the guns to Long Island, where he sold them to street-level buyers, many of whom were also legally prohibited from having a gun, according to federal prosecutors.
At least a dozen of those weapons have been recovered by law enforcement from Long Island crime scenes, prosecutors said.
They include a Glock model 27 handgun purchased by Polidore that was recovered from the scene of a homicide in Hempstead in December 2020 and a 9 mm Ruger handgun traced to a November 2020 shooting at a vehicle in Uniondale.
“The interstate flow of illegal guns is a grave threat to public safety,” said Thomas Kalogiros, assistant special agent-in-charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. "This sentencing sends a clear message to those who think they can traffic firearms into New York without consequence."
Wolfolk has a host of previous criminal convictions dating back a dozen years, including for an assault on a cabdriver, possession of a stolen firearm and third-degree assault with intent to cause physical injury. He still faces charges in Georgia related to an August 2022 arrest for criminal possession of a controlled substance and of a firearm.