Man Who Sold Gun to Suspect in North Texas Synagogue Standoff Charged with Federal Firearm Crime

This undated booking photo provided by the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office shows Henry “Michael” Williams. Williams, 32, was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm after authorities say he sold the weapon that Malik Faisal Akram used when he entered Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas, on Jan. 15 and held the synagogue’s rabbi and three others hostage for hours. (Dallas County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

A man who allegedly sold a weapon in the Dallas area to the gunman who took four hostages in a North Texas synagogue earlier this month has been charged with a federal firearm crime, a federal prosecutor said Wednesday.

Henry “Michael” Williams, 32, was arrested on a state warrant in Texas on Monday, officials said. Williams is being charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, according to a statement from the U.S. Justice Department. Williams previously had been convicted for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and attempted possession of a controlled substance, officials said. Williams’ attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Authorities say Malik Faisal Akram held four hostages on Jan. 15 in a standoff that lasted around 11 hours at Colleyville’s Congregation Beth Israel, a synagogue northeast of Fort Worth. The FBI has said it is considering the incident a terrorist act and hate crime.

Williams initially told investigators he remembered meeting a man with a British accent but that he couldn’t remember his name, the Department of Justice said. Akram was a British citizen. After looking at a photo of Akram, Williams confirmed that he sold a handgun to him at an intersection in South Dallas, two days before Akram attacked the synagogue, the press release said. Williams allegedly told officers that Akram said the gun – a semi-automatic Taurus G2C pistol – was going to be used for “intimidation” against someone who owed him money. The weapon was later recovered from the scene of the standoff, officials said.

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SOURCE: ABC13; The Texas Tribune, Reese Oxner