August 30, 2021
California Resident Pleads Guilty to Illegally Transporting Fireworks
On August 30, 2021, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Arturo Ceja III pleaded guilty to an August 4 criminal information charging Ceja with transportation of explosives without a license. According to court documents, Ceja made several trips to Nevada in late June to purchase various types of explosives and transported them to Ceja’s own residence. On June 30, while the fireworks were being removed from Ceja’s residence, the Los Angeles Police Department Bomb Squad determined that some fireworks were not safe to transport due to risk of detonation and needed to be destroyed on scene using a total containment vessel (TCV). During the destruction of the fireworks, the entire TCV exploded, damaging homes in the neighborhood and injuring a total of 17 law enforcement personnel and civilians.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Los Angeles Police Department.