PORTLAND — A West Paris man awaiting trial on a bank robbery charge is facing a federal gun charge.

Joshua Mason Oxford County Sheriff’s Department

Joshua Mason, 38, was in U.S. District Court by videoconference from an undisclosed jail this week, when a judge ordered him to remain behind bars after a brief hearing.

Mason was charged last month with possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, a felony that’s punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

According to court records, a federal agent in April 2020 saw an online classified ad listing a .40-caliber Taurus pistol and a .22-caliber, bolt-action rifle for sale in West Paris.

The agent determined that the phone number listed in the ad belonged to Mason, who was charged with bank robbery in 2019 and was convicted in 2003 of manslaughter, which is a felony.

An agent called Mason, who said the pistol was still for sale and sent the agent a photo, according to an affidavit by Special Agent Christopher Concannon at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The inquiring agent, who was outfitted with electronic surveillance, bought the guns from Mason and his father for $500, according to the affidavit.

Both guns had been manufactured outside Maine.

Mason’s attorney, Daphne Donahue, told U.S. Magistrate Judge John H. Rich III on Tuesday that Mason would waive his right to argue against his detention because there was a pending motion to revoke his bail in state court. If his bail status in state court were to change, Mason may return to federal court to argue for a change in bail.

Mason was arrested and charged with felony robbery and theft of Northeast Bank in Buckfield in April 2019.

That case is pending trial in Oxford County Superior Court in South Paris.

Bank officials told police that a masked man carrying a backpack came into the building the morning of April 17, 2019, displaying a handgun and demanding cash.

After getting cash, the man fled on foot, climbed into a dark-colored vehicle and drove away.

Acting on leads and information from bank employees, authorities tracked Mason to a West Paris home where he was arrested the next day.

Investigators seized evidence, including cash, at the home.

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