Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

N.C. Gun Stores Beat BATFE

Friday, November 21, 2008

Untitled Document

N.C. Gun Stores Beat BATFE

In an all-too-rare court victory, a pair of North Carolina gun stores has defeated an attempt by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) to revoke the stores’ federal dealers’ licenses. The win came in a Sept. 16 opinion by Senior U.S. District Judge Malcolm J. Howard of the Eastern District of North Carolina.

The two stores, Jim’s Gun Jobbery in Fayetteville and Jim’s Pawn & Gun in Wilmington, are owned by the same family, and the Fayetteville store is the largest gun store in North Carolina. BATFE began revocation proceedings in 2004, even though a 2001 BATFE “warning letter” commended one of the stores for its “concerted effort to comply with the laws and regulations.”

After reviewing BATFE’s decision, Judge Howard found that record keeping errors by the stores “do not constitute the type of ‘conscious, intentional, deliberate, [and] voluntary’ actions that are deemed willful.” Since a dealer’s license can only be revoked for “willful” violations, the bureau “was without authority to revoke [the stores’] licenses.”

Since a dealer’s license can only be revoked for “willful” violations, the bureau “was without authority to revoke [the stores’] licenses.”

Attorney Richard E. Gardiner, who represented the two stores, commented, “We were pleased that Judge Howard took the time to understand that Congress meant what it said when it authorized license revocations only when violations of the regulations were willful and rejected BATFE’s argument that simply repeating a human error in a minuscule number of instances was enough to revoke a license.”

In fact, Judge Howard found that the stores’ efforts to improve their records showed “a conscious effort to comply with the [Gun Control Act].” The judge pointed to the stores’ employee training programs and operating procedures as evidence that these were law-abiding businesses. Storeowner James Faircloth noted, “As a small business, we have always worked diligently to comply with the complex regulations and requirements of the BATFE. It has always been, and remains, our top priority to ensure that we have complete and accurate firearms records. We believe these efforts were recognized by the judge and provided the foundation for his decision in our case.”

The case also sheds light on anti-gun groups’ favorite talking point about “missing guns.” For example, one anti-gun website called Jim’s a “rogue dealer” that had been “bleeding guns illegally for 10 years.”

But Judge Howard’s review told a different story. The judge noted that in BATFE’s 2004 inspection of the Fayetteville store, the agency found 230 “open dispositions” out of more than 129,000 guns acquired. While anti-gunners would spin these as “missing guns,” a closer review showed that 68 of the guns were actually still in the store. Most of the others had been mistakenly entered twice in the store’s acquisition records, sent to manufacturers for repair, returned to customers, or were otherwise properly accounted for.

Overall, in fact, the stores’ record keeping compared favorably to that of BATFE itself. The bureau reported 76 guns and 418 laptop computers missing in a recent audit by the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General. The injustice of a troubled agency trying to hold dealers to a higher standard than it applies to itself only demonstrates the need to pass a comprehensive reform bill, such as H.R. 4900 in the current Congress (see “Time to Stop BATFE Abuses,” April 2008).

TRENDING NOW

News  

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Federal Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Ban

A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit issued a ruling in the case of Duncan v. Becerra on Tuesday upholding a lower court’s decision to suspend enforcement of California’s restriction on the possession of magazines ...

Washington: Seattle City Council Passes Ordinance Making Firearms Unavailable for Self-Defense

Monday, July 16, 2018

Washington: Seattle City Council Passes Ordinance Making Firearms Unavailable for Self-Defense

On July 9th, the Seattle City Council passed a mandatory firearm storage ordinance to restrict the self-defense rights of Seattle residents.  The ordinance, if signed by Mayor Jenny Durkan, will impose a one-size-fits-all method of storing firearms as ...

Anti-gun Efforts to Expand U.N. Regulations to Ammunition Continue

News  

Friday, July 6, 2018

Anti-gun Efforts to Expand U.N. Regulations to Ammunition Continue

Shortly before 4:00am last Saturday morning, the two week long Third Review Conference (RevCon3) on the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat, and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All ...

Federal Appellate Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Surrender Requirement

News  

Friday, July 20, 2018

Federal Appellate Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Surrender Requirement

Last summer, we reported on the welcome news that a federal court had blocked California’s plan to require owners of “large capacity” magazines to surrender or otherwise rid themselves of their formerly-lawful property. As the judge in ...

Anti-gun Propaganda Infiltrates History Channel’s Navy SEAL Drama “Six”

News  

Friday, July 20, 2018

Anti-gun Propaganda Infiltrates History Channel’s Navy SEAL Drama “Six”

With shows like “Tales of the Gun” and “Mail Call” with R. Lee Ermey, the History Channel has often served as a place where gun owners can enjoy entertainment free from the anti-gun political messaging ...

Justice Scalia Made Clear the Second Amendment and Heller Prohibit “Assault Weapon” Bans

News  

Second Amendment  

Gun Laws  

Friday, July 13, 2018

Justice Scalia Made Clear the Second Amendment and Heller Prohibit “Assault Weapon” Bans

On July 9, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) offered the following ham-handed statement in an attempted attack on President Donald Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee, D.C. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Brett Kavanaugh is a true Second Amendment radical. ...

Illinois: Governor Signs Two Gun Control Bills

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Illinois: Governor Signs Two Gun Control Bills

On July 17th, Governor Bruce Rauner signed House Bill 2354 and Senate Bill 3256 into law.

Moms Demand Action Reportedly Told Candidate Not to Talk about Support for Gun Ban

News  

Friday, July 20, 2018

Moms Demand Action Reportedly Told Candidate Not to Talk about Support for Gun Ban

Another chapter in the lengthy tale of gun control duplicity was written last week. On July 10, The Washington Free Beacon published a report of a video of Democratic nominee for New York’s rural upstate 21st congressional district Tedra ...

Washington: NRA and SAF File Lawsuit Against City of Seattle

Friday, July 20, 2018

Washington: NRA and SAF File Lawsuit Against City of Seattle

On Friday, July 20th, the NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation filed a lawsuit against the City of Seattle, Mayor Jenny Durkan, and others, to invalidate the mandatory firearm storage ordinance that was recently passed by ...

California: Federal Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Ban

Thursday, July 19, 2018

California: Federal Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Ban

A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit issued a ruling in the case of Duncan v. Becerra on Tuesday upholding a lower court’s decision to suspend enforcement of California’s restriction on the possession of magazines ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.