LOS ANGELES -- A storage unit paid for by former All-Pro receiver Lance Alworth containing a cache of illegal weapons, including a bazooka and a submachine gun, has been linked to members of an international drug smuggling ring.
Court records showed Thursday that U.S. Treasury agents raided the storage unit April 2 and found nearly two dozen weapons, including the submachine gun in a violin case.
Agents used an affidavit containing an interview with Alworth to support a warrant they had obtained earlier to search the storage unit. Agents linked the unit to a suspected member of an international drug smuggling gang and a Las Vegas, Nev., man acquitted this week in Fresno, Calif., on charges involving the theft of sophisticated radar gear and infra-red scopes that agents said were to be used by the smugglers.
In the affadavit, Treasury Agent Richard Bauer said he interviewed Alworth about his involvement with Bradley Bryant, jailed in Illinois on drug charges and facing drug smuggling charges in Fresno.
'In his statement, Mr. Alworth said that on or about Jan. 25, 1980, he received a telephone call from Bryant,' the agent wrote. 'Alworth said that Bryant told him, 'We are putting something in the locker in Westminster,' and Alworth said, 'I don't own that anymore.'
'Alworth said that Bryant told him, 'We know that, but will you keep the rent current?'
'Alworth replied and said, 'Sure, but what did you put in there?'
'Alworth said Bryant told him, 'You don't want to know.''
Bryant is listed by government agents as a high ranking member of 'The Company,' an international drug smuggling ring that reportedly includes former CIA agents, military officers and police officers.
Agent Bauer said the rental contract for the storage space was made out to an 'Alvin Snapper' and the contract was signed by A.A. Snaper. Alvin Snaper is the Las Vegas man acquitted Wednesday of stealing the electronic gear from China Lake Naval Weapons Center.