ATF

ATF Seeking Public Comments on Bump Stock Regulations

Consumers, Retailers, and Manufacturers Asked to Weigh in on Machine Gun Classification

ATF-BumpStock-RFCPresumably prompted almost exclusively by (or, at least, jumping at the “convenient” excuse of) their use in the October 1, 2017 attack on Route 91 Harvest Festival concert in Las Vegas, the BATFE is now seeking comments from the public regarding new regulations, potentially including reclassification as machine guns, on firearm accessories known as bump stocks.

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In the wake of the attack, which has since spawned no shortage of conspiracy theories thanks to the dearth of officially released details, there was a brief initial outcry calling for increased regulation before quickly fading from the news. Some of those calls even came from unexpected sources, such as the National Rifle Association (NRA) and businesses who make their money by renting fully automatic firearms to tourists.

Now, the Department of Justice is contemplating a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that would interpret the statutory definition of “machinegun” in the National Firearms Act of 1934 (NFA) and Gun Control Act of 1968 (GCA) to clarify whether bump stocks, fall within that definition. Before issuing such an NPRM, the Department and ATF are soliciting comments from the public and industry regarding the nature and scope of the market for these devices, giving citizens the opportunity to weigh in on the topic.

The request for comments was published in the Federal Register, and can be seen here (excerpts are below).  Comments can be left via the regulation’s page on the Regulations.gov website or left directly here. Gun Owners of America have produced a summary of their two main points: that 1) Bump Sstocks do not fall within the definition of “machine gun” under the NFA and 2) ATF has no Constitutional or legal authority to ban or regulate bump stocks.

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 Below are excerpts from the Request for Comments in the Federal Register:   Continue reading

U.S. Attorney Announces New Grant to Expand Efforts to Combat Gun Violence

Additional Resources to Share Gun Intelligence and get Trigger Pullers Off the Streets

BATFEU.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes announced today the expansion of the Project Safe Neighborhood program in the Puget Sound region, with additional focus on crime gun intelligence in South King and Pierce Counties. The U.S. Department of Justice awarded $500,000 to the program which will enhance intelligence sharing between law enforcement agencies so that guns used in crimes can be linked, helping law enforcement build cases for prosecution.

“Forensic tools from ATF, and intelligence sharing between law enforcement agencies have been key to identifying felons with guns who need to be off the street,” said U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes. “In three of the cases we are highlighting today, the guns recovered have been tied to multiple shootings – in one case as many as 9 shots fired incidents in a short period of time. Combating gun violence is a top priority of the Justice Department and my office.”

The Project Safe Neighborhood grant provides funding for a Special Assistant United States Attorney to review every firearms case in King County to see if it is appropriate for federal prosecution. Grant money in 2017-2018 will provide for additional personnel to leverage the Gun Crime Intelligence Center to make connections between shooting incidents in south King and Pierce Counties. This information helps law enforcement identify, arrest and prosecute high-impact offenders.

“ATF is proud to partner with local law enforcement and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to bring the most advanced forensic science to the battle against gun crime,” said Darek Pleasants, Special Agent in Charge, ATF Seattle. “The National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) is the only national network that allows for the capture and comparison of ballistic evidence to aid in solving and preventing violent crimes involving firearms. Since the program’s inception in 1999 through 2016, NIBIN partners have captured approximately 2.8 million images of ballistic evidence and confirmed more than 74,000 NIBIN hits.”

Unveiled in May 2001, Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is a comprehensive and strategic approach to gun law enforcement. PSN is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in America by networking both new and existing local programs that target gun crime and then providing them with the resources and tools they need to succeed. Implementation at the local level has fostered close partnerships between federal, state and local prosecutors and law enforcement.

Giving a Firearm as a Gift? Some Reminders From NSSF

GunLink_GiftThe holidays are just around the corner. As hunters, shooters, collectors or just plain plinkers, it’s a natural instinct to want to share our enjoyment of firearms with others. What better way to do that than to make a gift of a firearm to a family member, close friend or relative?

The first thing to remember if you’re thinking about giving someone a gun is that . . . it’s a gun! You already know that ownership of a firearm brings with it some serious legal and ethical obligations that other consumer products don’t. So let’s look at some questions you may have about giving a firearm as a gift.

The first question you have to ask is whether the intended recipient can legally own the firearm where he or she lives. With more than 20,000 different gun laws on the books, even the kinds of firearms that law-abiding citizens can own vary from place to place; for example, juveniles (under age 18), generally speaking, are precluded by law from possessing a handgun. Check out the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) website for an overview of local laws and, whatever you do, don’t forget that you can never under any circumstances transfer a firearm to someone you know — or have reasonable cause to believe — legally can’t own one. That’s a federal felony, so be careful.   Continue reading

NRA Applauds Introduction of Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act

The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) applauds the introduction of H.R. 3668, the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Act. Introduced by Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), the bill will reduce burdensome regulations on America’s sportsmen, enhance access to public lands and simplify the purchasing process for firearm suppressors.

“The SHARE Act is critical legislation that will protect America’s hunters and recreational shooters and help preserve our outdoor heritage,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director, NRA-ILA. “This bill contains many important reforms to federal law that will remove unnecessary restrictions on our Second Amendment freedoms and hunting heritage.”

A key aspect of the bill is the Hearing Protection Act (HPA), which would eliminate burdensome and expensive regulations on suppressors. In addition, the bill would ensure greater protections for carrying lawfully-possessed firearms on land managed by the Army Corps of Engineers; require public lands management plans to facilitate hunting, fishing and recreational shooting; reform the outdated “sporting purposes test” that currently muddies federal gun control law regarding the importation of rifles and shotguns; and make critical reforms to the interstate transportation provisions of the Firearm Owner’s Protection Act (FOPA).

“On behalf of America’s gun owners and sportsmen, I would like to thank Rep. Duncan for introducing this important legislation. All Americans deserve access to our rich outdoor heritage and the tools that help making hunting and shooting safer,” concluded Cox.

ATF Releases 2017 Report on Firearms Commerce in the U.S.

California Ranks No. 2 in the Most NFA Registered Weapons

BATFE LogoThe Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) recently released the Firearms Commerce in the United States – Annual Statistical Update 2017. The report provides comparative data from as far back as 1986 for context, analyses of firearms manufacturing trends over the years, and a broad picture of the state of firearms commerce in the United States today.

The data in the 2017 report shows an estimated 43 percent increase in firearms manufacturing in the U.S. within the last five years. In 2015, the number of firearms manufactured grew to more than 9.3 million, up from the approximate 6.5 million firearms manufactured in 2011. The most recent available firearm manufacturing statistics are through calendar year 2015.

Rifles made up the bulk of the firearms manufactured at 3.6 million in 2015. Pistols were a close second at 3.5 million. The number of rifles manufactured increased 9 percent from the previous year and the number of pistols decreased slightly by approximately 2 percent.

Updated firearms import and export data is included in the report. Import data is updated through 2016 and export data through 2015. In 2016, more than 5.1 million firearms were imported into the United States showing a 30 percent increase since 2015.

The most recent export statistics show more than 343,000 firearms (an 18 percent decrease from the previous year) were exported worldwide.

The commerce report includes a state-by-state breakdown of the National Firearm Act (NFA) tax revenue information. NFA is also referred to as Title II of the federal firearms laws and was first enacted in 1934.    Continue reading

ATF Seeks Public Assistance in Recovering Rifles Stolen from Clayton, N.C. Gun Store

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and Clayton Police Department (CPD) are seeking the public’s assistance in the recovery of five 5.56/.223 caliber rifles stolen on November 23, 2016, during a burglary at Trigger Happy Guns, located at 227 E. Main Street in Clayton, N.C.

The stolen firearms are similar in appearance to the photo below:

firearm_picture_-_charlotte_fd

Anyone with information regarding the location of these firearms and/or persons who unknowingly purchased one or more of these firearms can contact ATF at 1-888-ATF-TIPS, email ATFTips@atf.gov; through its website at www.atf.gov/contact/atf-tips; or through the ReportIt app, available on both Google Play and the Apple App Store.

Anyone with information can also contact Clayton Police Department at 919-553-4611.   All calls and tips will be kept confidential.

ATF along with our law enforcement partners are committed to ensuring that our communities are safe, and that those who commit violent crimes such as this are held accountable.

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