Gun Owners' Action League

An Act Regarding the Prevention of Illegal Trafficking and Gun Violence

Dealers Beware, Again

Second term Senator Sonia Chang Diaz of Boston has filed a bill that among other things would essentially put licensed gun retailers in Massachusetts out of business. 

S.1195, An Act Regarding the Prevention of Illegal Trafficking and Gun Violence among the Youth of the Commonwealth  has a few sections that should be of immediate concern to retailers.

The first is Section 4 of the bill that would limit the transfer of more than 15 handguns in a one year period. At first reading it appears to be a more “generous” version of the one gun a month bills. The key words in the section are “to any person”. As someone who has had to argue countless times with what certain phrases in gun law means, I am concerned that those words could mean. A judge in a courtroom or a prosecutor could easily argue that it was meant to be collective. Meaning once a retailer has sold fifteen guns in any particular year, they are done for the year.

If my reading of those words seems a little stretched just refer to section 13. That section actually confirms my concerns about the intentions of section 4. Section 13 proposes to imprison for five years any retailer who accepts or KEEPS more than 15 handguns in a one year period. 

The two sections combined would only allow a licensed retailer to bring in, keep and sell 15 handguns in a one year period. 

SECTION 4. The third paragraph of section 123 of said chapter 140, as so appearing in the 2008 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “device.”, in line 252, the following 2 sentences:- 

No person licensed under section 122 or section 122B shall sell or otherwise transfer to any person more than 15 firearms during any 1 year period, except by devise or trust. Sales or transfers that occur at any time during such year, whether the sales or transfers amount to more than 15 in the course of a single transaction or amount to more than 15 sales or transfers in the aggregate during the course of a year, shall constitute a violation of this section.

SECTION 13. Said Chapter 140, is hereby further amended by inserting after section 128B, the following section:-

Section 128C. Whoever being licensed under section 122 and who purchases or otherwise accepts and keeps within the commonwealth for any period of time more than 15 firearms during any 1 year period shall be punished by not more than 5 years in state prison and the licensing authority shall suspend any license or identification card issued under this chapter to such person for a period not to exceed 3 years. This section shall not apply to firearms bequeathed through trust or devise.



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