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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 6/18/2003 7:13:42 AM EDT
I have a question that has been hit on in this forum before but I don't seem to have the answer I am looking for. If I made a AR15 using a 80% lower and wanted to sell it to a friend, what would legally prevent me from selling the gun. There is no paper work to say who owns the gun in the first place. There is no serial no. to be traced or registered. For all practical purposes the gun does not exist so far as the ATF is concerned. If the friend buys it and commits a crime with it how could it be traced to anyone except the person who comitted a crime with it. So the question is if I sell the gun what is the legal ramifications of that sale for me??
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 7:23:38 AM EDT
"Manufacturing firearms without a license" would be the charge, IIRC, 80% finished lower are legal for the builder but cannot be sold that way, ya'd have to place some-sort of number on it and even then, believe the charge above would still be valid. Personal use only, although ya have a valid point, but suppose the guy ya sold it to rolled over on ya, to save his own hide???? Mike
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 7:29:37 AM EDT
Yea, I thought of that. A person wanted me to build him one like mine. If I built it for him what would be the law on that. I suppose all the parts would have to be bought by him. Could I legally help him build one or Could I be charged for helping.
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 8:10:00 AM EDT
It depends on how you interpret the ATFE's letter. It says "..a firearm may be made by a nonlicencee, providing it is not for sale,..." It doesn't say it can never be sold, only that it can't be made with the intent of selling it. But, YOU can't do it, since in your post you indicated that you intend to make a firearm then sell it to a friend. Granted, it is a matter of interpretation, it is only a BATF letter, how would they know...etc. The problem would be..you sell it to a friend, the friend commits a crime and tells the cops he bought it from you. 1. You created a firearm for the purpose of selling it. 2. Violation of #1 makes you a manufacturer..as mr_wilson states. 3. Violation of #2 makes you in violation of the Serial Number requirement (unless you put a serial number on it when you sell it). 4. Possible conspiracy with the buyer to commit a crime? And we haven't even gotten to the State Laws. Does your state require Serial Numbers? Does your state allow residents to make firearms? Does your state require registration? Does your state allow private sales? Does your state allow sale/transfer of home-builts? It is likely that you would be in deeper trouble than the buyer.
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 11:26:15 AM EDT
[b]Enough said,I ain't going to make one and sell it. Thanks for the input.[/b]
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 5:37:01 PM EDT
Originally Posted By ru-legal: [b]Enough said,I ain't going to make one and sell it. Thanks for the input.[/b]
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good choice. [url=http://www.ktordnance.com/index2.html]More info on 80%[/url]
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 6:03:23 PM EDT
If he bought the parts himself and you helped him put it together it wouldn't be an issue. If you bought the parts, it would be an issue.
Link Posted: 6/19/2003 5:03:02 AM EDT
But then when the ATF got involved They would say I Made the gun and who knows what laws they could charge me with. AS I stated eariler [b] I ain't going to make him a gun. I want to sleep good at nights[/b]
Link Posted: 6/20/2003 3:35:17 PM EDT
What if you make the gun then TRADE IT for 6 big viles of crack would that be legal? No exchange of money and a discredited witness.
Link Posted: 6/20/2003 4:21:44 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Stickman: If he bought the parts himself and you helped him put it together it wouldn't be an issue. If you bought the parts, it would be an issue.
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Wrong. Do you think a gunsmith would make a rifle for you if you brought him the 80% parts? No Way in Hell.
Link Posted: 6/20/2003 11:18:44 PM EDT
Informal, off the books, everybody sticks to the story deals are one thing. Sterile lower, guys know each other, never registered. Nothing stops the guy from claiming he made it himself. On the other hand, you set up a table at a gun show, with three ARs for sale that were built by an unlicensed manufacturer and have no markings, it might be slamsville. To narrowly read the law, it says the guns cannot be built with the intent to sell. It does not say you can never sell the gun. Fact is, the law is the same whether you did an 80% lower or a 100% lower, because the exise tax is not paid on the 100% lowers either. The only difference is that the 100% lowers have a trackable chain of custody, and the ATF goes easy on them because they would rather have some trackable chain of custody than none. Still, there are lots of holes in the system brought out by GCA '68. Not the least of which is the fact that a trace only goes to the original buyer. If that buyer trades the gun/lower even at another FFL holder, the used gun is not reported by that dealer to a central location or the factory, so even though the second (or third, or fourth or fifth ect) dealer does all the paperwork on the lower/gun, the information does not really go to ATF unless it is in a state that registers long gun sales or the particular dealer goes out of business, fowards his bound book to ATF, and that information gets put into their computerized database. People have been getting away with the builds on 100% frames and lowers, then selling them, for decades. Millions of 1911s, ARs, FALs, and now AKs have been done up that way. One gunsmith I knew did not even get a peep out of the ATF about it until it reached the point of 50 guns per month. Nowdays, the unofficial number is ten guns per year on reciever builds. You do more than that, and they start asking questions. This is not limited to an assault weapon issue, but also applies to those gunsmiths that build the $2500 1911s out of parts, and those who make the $10,000 engraved shotguns. No tax was paid on the recievers, but if it left their posession as a complete firearm, and was value added product, then it technically is manufacturing. The thing is that ATF has been easy on it most of the time because they still get what they consider is important from a law enforcement standpoint, which is the somewhat papered chain of custody for the firearm. What's left is the tax issue, and if you keep the dollar amounts small in relation to what they figure they can snag on forfeiture, they leave you alone. Again, most federal agents dread the idea of having to go into the proverbial trailer park to take dangerous but valuable weapons from people who are not otherwise criminals and probably value those weapons as their sole prized posessions.
Link Posted: 6/22/2003 9:00:51 AM EDT
You shed more light on the issue. Probably a person could build and sell without a problem but there is allways the chance that a problem could arise and you could find yourself in court on some unrelated charge and with the gun manufacture issue added to the charge it could possible persuade a jury or judge to find you at fault because of the gun making charge. Even in the case that a good lawyer got you off, the large sum of money for legal fees would put a hurt on your finicial condition. I think I will stick to my original feelings about not making my friend a gun. Not even helping him. I want to stay clear of legal trouble.
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