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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 7/30/2001 7:07:50 PM EST
let's say you were offered some firearms that were "owned" but not actually in the posession of the "owner" at this time. please bear with me. In order to keep the sale completely legit and legal, is there a way for me to verify a persons legal ownership of a firearm ? And therefore their right to sell it ? ATF ? Some one else ? No, I do not want them unless I can legally have them and YES, I do want a totally legit sale.
Link Posted: 7/30/2001 7:32:15 PM EST
For the most part once firearms are in private hands thier ability to be traced stops there. Unless these firearms were reported stolen and you asked the local cops to run the serial numbers then you would never find anything out about them. I would bet that as soon as your seller was informed you wanted to run the S/Ns first that would be the end of the sale to you. Most firearms owners do not like thier ownership questioned as far as legality goes. You can ask for documentation of ownership from the seller, but the more questions you ask the less they will trust you and wonder what type of legal sting you are trying to get them sucked in on. You want 100% verifiable legal guns. Then order through an FFL from a distributer on a new gun. Even if a FFL has a used gun in his inventory there is no way the FFL can verify the gun is not stolen or a used in a crime gun. If you ever get caught with a stolen gun, then either the original owner or the insurance company who paid off the owner for thier loss in a claim will legally own the gun. You will not be compensated for you loss even though you bought the gun fully thinking it was done proper and legal. Depending upon how many times the gun has changed hands increases it's chance of being illegal. If the current owner is in a real hurry to sell at basement closeout prices this should raise a red flag. Pawn shops usually ask for a thumbprint to pawn a gun. Even they can't check the legality, but want some recourse in case they get stuck with contriband and want to hunt down the seller.
Link Posted: 7/30/2001 7:40:19 PM EST
[Last Edit: 7/30/2001 7:39:39 PM EST by shaggy]
Sparky - I may have misinterpreted the problem here, so please correct me if I have, but here goes... It sounds like you're having a hard time seperating the concept of "ownership" from "possession". A person can be legally prohibited from possessing a firearm, yet still "own" it. That is, although they paid for it and have all property rights in the item, they are prohibited from physically possessing it. An example... A guy came to my office a few years ago after a major fight with his wife. When the cops came to investigate all the racket, he was arrested, and his wife filed for an order of protection (restraining order). Thus he could not possess a firearm. The cops took possession of his guns at the scene and, because of the order, refused to return them to him. The guns were still his, but he could not possess them and the cops couldn't give them to him. He found a buyer for the guns, all three of us went to the police station, he signed over all interest and title to the guns to me (an FFL) and the police released them to me. I then transfered the guns to the buyer. The buyer paid for the guns. The first guy owned and controled the guns (or value thereof) but he could not physically possess them. I guess the simplest example is when you give something to the valet parking guy or the coatcheck girl. You own the item, but they are holding it. They don't have title tothe item - you do. But in the case of a firearm, some people can just never retake possession - they still have title to the item though. Sounds like you have a similar problem. You want to check with the person in possesion of the gun(s) and get something indicating who owns the items in question. If its the guy who claims to "own" it, you should be fine. Just make sure you get something from the "owner" directing the "possessor" to release the item to you. ...or did I totally miss the point of the question?
Link Posted: 7/31/2001 7:30:39 PM EST
I would bet that as soon as your seller was informed you wanted to run the S/Ns first that would be the end of the sale to you. Most firearms owners do not like thier ownership questioned as far as legality goes.
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And from the other side of the tracks. If I sold a gun (which I wouldn't) I would be happy to furnish the serial # to the buyer. And, I would never buy a gun from someone who wouldn't provide me with the serial # prior to my handing over money. You are living in Wonderland if you think that trust is worth crap.
Link Posted: 8/1/2001 2:23:55 PM EST
I thank you for the feedback...much appreciated. Occasionally older firearms could come on the market that were bought long ago, or traded, or had been (or are) owned by people who can no longer "possess" them. Finding out, for example, that the gun was stolen from the last "registered" owner, who may be 4 or 5 owners ago and beyond anyone's current memory, would be little consolation to someone who actually makes a legal purchase from the last owner. See where this could go ? South FL hasn't been the hotbed of legal firearms transactions in the past few decades. Hell, some legal "owners" can't "possess" cuz they've been locked up for years. You buy one of THEIR guns, legally, from a person selling for them, and you'll be happy to be able to look back to at least one of the past legal sales having been "registered". Because of this, I would still like some way to access a record of the last sale that was entered in some database. ??? Am I being paranoid ? I think not. RSVP
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