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Gun dealers


A Federal Firearms License (FFL) allows a person or company to manufacture, import and sell firearms. These gun dealers are required to keep records of all firearm sales and transfers for the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco & Firearms (ATF). The ATF is allowed to inspect or request a copy of these records during the course of a criminal investigation. Gun dealers are also required to report the sale of two or more handguns to a person within five business days. It is known that a substantial number of these FFLs dealers engage in illegal gun sales or allow their guns to be stolen. Between 2008 and 2010 our ATF found that over 62,000 firearms were missing from licensee inventories with no record of sale. Between 2009 and 2011, it also identified over 16,000 firearms that had disappeared from the inventories of gun manufacturers without explanation. A recent ATF study found that the policing gun shops has been conciliatory, with the ATF often bending over backward to go easy on wayward dealers coast to coast, allowing guns to flow into the hands of criminals.

Licensed gun dealers are the original providers of all guns used in crime, with the exception of stolen guns or those straw purchased. In the mid 1990’s, ATF gun dealer reforms reduced the number of unethical weapons dealers in business. This coincided with a dramatic reduction in gun crime. Gun dealers who went out of business because of these federal reforms were found to have supplied about one-third of guns confiscated and traced by law enforcement agencies. This suggests that “leakage” from FFL gun stores significantly contributes to our crime rate.

Pending Legislation: H.R.4271 - Keeping Gun Dealers Honest Act of 2021
Sponsor: Rep. James R. Langevin (RI)
Status: House Committee on the Judiciary
Chair: Rep. Jerrold Nadler (NY)












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Poll Opening Date
November 22, 2021
Poll Closing Date
November 28, 2021


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