Arms trafficking is the act of unlawfully possessing, receiving, or transporting firearms or ammunition across state lines. While licensed firearm dealers are permitted to buy and sell firearms both in the state where their business is located and elsewhere in the U.S., or even internationally, those who are improperly licensed or who are not licensed at all could face severe repercussions in federal court for the same conduct. To ensure that you are not wrongly convicted of arms trafficking, please contact a firearm and gun crime lawyer today who can begin working on your defense.
Under federal law, it is unlawful for anyone but a licensed importer, manufacturer, or dealer to engage in the business of importing, dealing in, or manufacturing firearms or ammunition. It is similarly unlawful to ship, transfer, sell, give, deliver, or transport such an item in interstate commerce to any person who:
- Has been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment for more than one year;
- Is a fugitive from justice;
- Unlawfully uses a controlled substance;
- Has been committed to a mental institution or adjudicated as suffering from a mental defect;
- Is an alien and is unlawfully in the U.S., or has been admitted to the U.S. under a nonimmigrant visa;
- Has been discharged from the military under dishonorable conditions;
- Has renounced his or her U.S. citizenship;
- Is subject to a court order that was issued after a hearing and restrains him or her from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner; or
- Has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.
Individuals who fall under one or more of these categories are also prohibited from possessing or receiving any firearm or ammunition which was shipped or transported in interstate commerce.
Limitations on Licensed Firearm Dealers
Even licensed firearm dealers are prohibited from certain activities, including:
- Selling or delivering a shotgun or rifle, or ammunition for a shotgun or rifle to a person believed to be less than 18 years of age;
- Selling or delivering any other type of firearm or ammunition to someone believed to be under the age of 21 years old;
- Selling a firearm to someone in a state where the possession or purchase of a firearm by such a person would be unlawful under state or city law; or
- Selling or delivering any firearm to a person believed to reside in a state other than the state where the dealer’s business is located, unless the recipient meets with the dealer in person and the transfer is in compliance with both states’ laws, or the firearm is being loaned or rented for sporting purposes.
Unfortunately, even those who attempt to comply with these rules and regulations could end up being charged with a federal arms trafficking charge, which come with severe penalties.
Call Our Office Today for Legal Assistance
If you are being charged with arms trafficking or another firearm-related federal offense, please contact dedicated Miami federal crime attorney Jeffrey S. Weiner, P.A. at 305-670-9919 for a free case evaluation.