Arson Task Force Makes Major Illegal Fireworks Bust

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FAIR OAKS --

The arson task force's successful seizure of 5,000 pounds of illegal fireworks and explosives from a Fair Oaks home Wednesday is one less distributor they have to worry about.

Formerly convicted felon John Guill, 59, is behind bars at the Sacramento County Jail on $420,000 bail. He's being charged with felony possession of illegal and dangerous fireworks.

Metro Fire Investigator Steve Johnson showed off the huge pile of illegal fireworks Thursday and described how they found the stash.

"I received an anonymous tip from a citizen who was concerned about the amount of illegal fireworks being sold as he stated, 'It was a drive through of illegal fireworks,'" he said.

Johnson said Guill was very cooperative with authorities during the seizure.

The suspect even allegedly admitted to selling illegal fireworks for years and, according to Johnson, Guill said if they showed up days earlier there would have been even more fireworks.

Some of the products found had fake seals of approval on them and resembled legal fireworks, which Johnson said could become confusing for those who do not realize they're purchasing illegal fireworks.

Explosives were found among the fireworks and Johnson said drugs were also discovered. Guill is facing a minimum of a $10,000 fine and one year in prison if convicted.

Illegal fireworks are those that explode, leave the ground or send sparks higher than 12 feet according to the Sacramento Metro Fire District.

The arson task force is made up of Metro Fire investigators and Sacramento Sheriff's bomb squad detectives.

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