Urgent warning: BATFE is on a rampage nationwide - READ!


Jim March
May 10, 2003, 01:47 AM
There's a live thread active right now titled "Gun-Runners, Beware":


What's really going on, according to a tip I've recieved, is that the old BATF has been yanked from the Treasury department and has been shifted to Justice. In the process, the BATF bureaucrats have been ordered to justify their positions by Ashcroft and company.

So they're looking for as many fast gun busts as they can make, even if they're not solid. A case might get tossed in a year or two, but meanwhile it adds to the stats showing that the particular department is "accomplishing something".

The peak of the "enforcement" activity is in the East and South, but expect it to spread nationwide. "Stings" at gun shows will be heightened, there'll be more inspections of FFLs, they'll be pulling *anything* they can.


My source is VERY solid but must remain anon.

Spread this far and wide.

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May 10, 2003, 05:56 AM

You are correct, the good folks at ATF moved to the Justice department and renamed the agency, ATFE. FFL holders were notified last year regarding the change and whatnot.

I believe enforcement is somewhat the same as before. In the past the good folks at ATFe weren't "publicly" announcing it, unlike today.

May 10, 2003, 10:03 AM
Jim: Thanks for the info, this probably explains the ATF's recent quest to seize all sorts of parts kits (FALs, PPSHs, etc). Linked on FalFiles here (http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=74434).

My FFL was audited on Thursday, he said he had a hell of a time convincing the FBI (his words, more likely it was the ATF) that it was legal for him to have a bare FAL reciever that he was waiting for me to come by and fill out the paperwork on.


May 10, 2003, 11:37 AM
So this expains why my friend got a "mysterious call" asking him if he wanted to buy a "Survival" package which included, an M14 (orAK47, or M16), 12 gernades, a rocket launcher or bazooka, a pistol, and a gas mask! The "Seller" had found my friends info from a online petition he had signed. He offered all the above for 2k!

Then he threatened to "Put a cap in his head" if he went to the police or feds. He also denied being a fed, but come on! Who would be so stupid as to call up random people and ask them to buy illegal weapons?

Damn feds must be getting desperate!

May 10, 2003, 12:49 PM
If that phone call happened in MD, you could tape the call and bring it in to the police- and be the only regular civillian in the state that has a CCW.

May 10, 2003, 01:02 PM
IIRC, MD doesnt allow recording of a phone conversation without both parties knowing about it. Thats how Linda Trip got in trouble during the Clinton Impeachment.


May 10, 2003, 01:19 PM
Hmm, well...
it would have to be one of those 'the-answering-machine-picks-up-just-before-you-do-and-records-the-whole-thing' kind of serendipitous calls.

May not be admissible in court, but it may get you 'documented evidence of an ongoing threat to your life" which is one of the very few ways to be graced with a ccw in MD.

If its entrapment that's happening, I say get our local guys involved: I know a couple and I really like them; super people, great family, etc- not at all the stereotyped JBT so often mentioned on THR. (Never once mentioned guns around them, I don't even think they care. They are actually relatively gentle people, for lack of a better term.)
So the local guys look into it, find out who it is and it goes nowhere. But at least it will stop.

So report them: if its a real badguy threatening your head with a new cap, you're better off to report it. If its the other situation, you at least stopped the calls.

May 10, 2003, 01:29 PM
Welll....I got post the e-mail here if you would like to see it. He said something else like "and I WILL find you" (if I tell). Question: CAN feds doing a sting threaten to kill you? I have heard that yes they can (playing tough) and no they can't.

I also used to think that they couldn't deny being cops or feds, but that is WRONG! They can and do deny being affiliated with the police and Federal government.

May 10, 2003, 01:47 PM
Please post it! Sorta curious, sorta concerned.

Don Gwinn
May 10, 2003, 03:14 PM
They can tell pretty much any lie they want, though you can later try to use entrapment as a defense. When the Illinois AG's office ran an internet sting last year, they told the suspects that what they wanted to do was not against the law. Some of the poor fools needed three or four very persuasive messages to convince them that if they just broke a gun down into parts they could send it directly to a buyer without going through an FFL. Then they were arrested.

Paranoia is sometimes embarrassing, but it's not a bad idea where federal law enforcement is concerned.

So was this a phone call to your friend or an email to you?

May 10, 2003, 04:34 PM
So... Don't break the law. OK.

May 10, 2003, 04:42 PM
Question: CAN feds doing a sting threaten to kill you?

No. They can try to talk you into doing something illegal of your own free will. That may or may not be considered entrapment. By threatening you, you no longer are making the choice based on free will but due to coercion.

Like Eric said, just don't knowingly break the law. If you're not sure about the legality, don't do it regardless of how good it sounds.

May 10, 2003, 05:43 PM
So... Don't break the law. OK.

What if you don't know all 7.8 x 10E9 of them? :rolleyes:

An undercover fed tells you it's okay and you're on a one-way trip to Leavenworth. Gotcha!

May 10, 2003, 06:11 PM

Jim March
May 10, 2003, 07:59 PM
Let me clarify something here: they're looking for "quantity over quality" of busts. You do NOT have to actually break the law to get roped into this. They don't care if the busts hold up in court later - they're looking for raw numbers right now, in an effort to save their jobs.

And no way in HELL are they going to alert the media to what they're doing - they're looking to trap the ignorant or unwary into anything that smells even slightly shady. They don't even want Ashcroft catching on to what's going on here - it's not directly Ashcroft's "fault", it's not something those high up in Justice want - this is happening because they've asked these "incoming departments" (to Justice) to justify their jobs and they didn't realize what a bunch of slimeballs they were taking in and how said slime would react to the "justification requirement".

Said slimeballs are facing the unemployment lines if they don't come up with something right this minute.

So check six!

May 10, 2003, 08:40 PM
It wold be kind of comical for someone to record one of these conversations and then contact the local ATFE office. Imagine the red faces on the Fed's when they find out that they are investigating their own sting operation.

May 10, 2003, 08:42 PM
In other news, Customs and the Dept. of Agriculture are reporting increased seizures of giant Italian hogs...

May 11, 2003, 01:16 AM
What if you don't know all 7.8 x 10E9 of them?

Then you shouldnt be in the business....


May 11, 2003, 01:20 AM
You can't be serius, Alaska. Not even cops know all the laws, and they enforce them. Hell, lawyers and judges don't have them memorized, why do you think they have all of those shelves of legal texts in their offices.

May 11, 2003, 04:20 AM
I like how on COPS or whatever, they do a sting and the mark asks the UC "are you in law enforcement in any way?" as if that is the magic question that all LEO must answer truthfully - lol.


They are allowed to lie in certain circumstances. Some may find it habit forming.

May 11, 2003, 01:34 PM
You can't be serius, Alaska. Not even cops know all the laws, and they enforce them. Hell, lawyers and judges don't have them memorized, why do you think they have all of those shelves of legal texts in their offices.

I am serious..

First of all legal texts are possesed by judges and lawyers to help them interpret "gray areas" of the law. Certain things are not amenable to interpretion. I can assure you that most lawyers know the terms and meanings of the statutes involved in their areas of specialty. I can also assure you that most criminal defense lawyers have their applicable penal codes almost memorized.

Next, the laws surrounding gun dealers are not all that complicated or difficult. Further, its a gun business. You should be practcing "defensive" operatios, just like a Doctor practices "defensive medicine". Your paperwork should alwys be filled out properly. You should decline suspicious sales.

Now I happen to agree with Jim that its a sheer numbers game at this point in time for the ATF...but who is gonna be the victim of their numbers game...??

Answer...the "easy dealer"...easy in the context of being easy for the agents...

Consider..Store A sells high grade rifles and shotguns. An SKS or Lorcin never degrades his premises. His paperwork is impeccable. Hes never had a "crime trace". He alwys cooperates with the ATF.

Store B is run by a Mall Ninja with an attitude. They will sell anyhting to make a buck. Their premises look like a Somali bazaar. Half the crime traces in a tri state area come from them. Thei paperwork looks like its been prepared and filed by monkeys.

Now who do you think will be targeted? Yep its wrong, becasue Shop B may be innocent, but darn, its sure gonna be easy...


May 11, 2003, 02:37 PM
So, make up your mind. Does store B not deserve to be in business or is it wrong for the ATFe to pick on them?

May 11, 2003, 03:05 PM
Jim March , Name your source.


4v50 Gary
May 11, 2003, 03:35 PM
The Batf-men could do some real crime stop'n and go into the projects in L.A., S.F., N.Y., Baltimore, Chicago, Detroit, and even at home at Wash, D.C. to clean up crime. Nah, the kiddies & drug dealers shoot back.:rolleyes:

Jim March
May 11, 2003, 04:33 PM
12-34hom: I can't. I wish to hell I could. I'm even having to hold back specifics on a series of cases.

Stop and think about this: in the CCW wars, people ask me to review their "good causes" and similar personal info all the time. Would you want me to be the kind of guy who divulges information that could embarass somebody or get them in trouble?

May 11, 2003, 04:40 PM
4v50, they may find people other than kiddies and drug dealers shoot back, too.

May 11, 2003, 04:45 PM
Does store B not deserve to be in business or is it wrong for the ATF to pick on them?

Just because a dealer sells Jennings and other lower-end guns and happens to live in an area where some of his sales wind up being used by criminals, doesn't automatically make him a bad dealer.

Like Wildalaska said, the actual laws governing the actions of a common 01 dealer aren't all that complicated. Just keep your paperwork accurate and up to date and don't worry about it.

Most dealers that get bit by the ATF are the ones that bend the rules to make a sale, whether for the money, just to help someone out and in some cases that I recall, just to get the guy out of his store.

Just follow the rules and don't take any shortcuts.

May 11, 2003, 04:57 PM
Question: Does the FACT that our "conservative" President approves of the AWB weigh in on this subject at all?
I would think that it only fuels the ravage appatite of the BATF.

May 11, 2003, 06:09 PM
Then you shouldnt be in the business....

What if you aren't in business and just want to sell a gun? Nothing in this thread gives me the impression FFLs are the only ones being targeted.

Maybe you were hoping for new federal legislation to mandate all sales through FFLs just so some guy doesn't get busted by ATF for doing something in contravention to the law? You'd actually be doing him a favor, eh?


May 11, 2003, 07:00 PM

May 11, 2003, 07:22 PM

Then you shouldnt be in the business....
So, by your standards, should you be in the business of owning guns? Do you know what's legal to do with your own gun as a non-FFL and what isn't? Here are a couple situations for starters.

1) You decide to up the capacity of your sporterized Mauser. You take a cheap 20-round HK-91 mag and do some cutting and welding to end up with a permanently-affixed 10-round mag on your Mauser. Are you a criminal?

2) Same as above, but you hire a machinist to make you a new floorplate which will allows you to use removeable 20-round HK mags. Are you a criminal? Is the gunsmith a criminal?

3) You bought a traditional wood-stocked Ruger Mini-14 in 1988. You decide to put a pistol grip and folding stock on it in 2003. Are you a criminal?

4) You buy a C96 Mauser pistol in 7.63 Mauser at a gun show. You decide to buy a wooden should stock for it and shoot the weapon with it attached. Are you a criminal?

5) You find a box of steel-cored 7.62x25 Tokarev ammo in your basement. You decide to shoot it up in your CZ-52. Are you a criminal? If so, at what point?

6) You buy a completely unmarked 30-round AR mag at a gunshow. Are you a criminal? If accused of a crime for this, what defense do you offer?

7) You buy five Yugo SKSs in an effort to get one really good one. After choosing the best, you resell the remaining four for $10 each more than you paid for them. Are you a criminal? What if you sell them for $100 more than you paid?

8) You decide to do some gunsmithing on the side. A customer asks you to shorten a shotgun, and you cut the barrel down to 18.25 inches. Unbeknownst to you, the customer is an AFT agent. He cuts the barrel down another 1/2 inch and says you did it. Are you a criminal?

Any idea what the right answers are? Personally, I think that every one of them is disgusting, because it is requires serious legal study to figure out if they involve breaking the law. Why on earth should people be subjected to laws so far removed from issues of right and wrong that they have no idea if they are breaking the law or not?

Like Ayn Rand said, the point of administrative law is to make everyone guilty of something to give the government leverage.

May 11, 2003, 07:37 PM
YOU TELL EM, IAN! I am sick and tired of all these authoritarians and their tyrannical ways! It's time to take AMERIKA BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

No gun law is a legal law per the constitution.

May 11, 2003, 08:04 PM
01. No.
02. No. No.
03. Yes.
04. Yes.
05. No.
06. No. 922(w)(4) "The lack of a serial number as described in section 923(i) of this title shall be a presumption that the large capacity ammunition feeding device is not subject to the prohibition of possession in paragraph (1)."
07. No. No.
08. No.

May 11, 2003, 09:30 PM
Darn HK, ya beat me to it...

Im gonna add that I have yet to meet a Fed Agent who wasnt entirely honorable, that includes my years as a criminal defense attorney handling drug and gun crimes as well as the gun business.



"It's time to take AMERIKA BACK"

You spelled America wrong

"No gun law is a legal law per the constitution."

O gawd, not another one:banghead: ....Guess your knowledge of the law equals your spelling:neener:

May 11, 2003, 10:53 PM
Well, here's the legal interpretation I've been given:

1) Yes. Even though the end result is not high-cap, it is modification of a pre-ban mag such that it no longer functions in its original gun, but is not destroyed. According to my gunsmith, anyway.

2) Maybe. If you have a manufacturer's license then you can; otherwise you cannot. This is a pretty recent change in BATF regs (not the actual law, just their rules).

3) Yes. Wasn't an assault weapon then, so it can't be now despite being preban.

4) No. The C96 and Luger are exempted from the SBR category when using original stocks as a helpful loophole for their C&R status.

5) No. Can't be imported or manufactured, but can be possessed.

6) No.

7) Maybe. If you make enough profit to get the attention of an ATF agent, you could be prosectued for dealing without an FFL. Vague wording of the law and all that.

8) Maybe. If its your word vs theirs, you're out of luck. Better take some photos...

The mere fact that there can be contention about the legality of these hypotheticals is enough to show that there is a very serious problem.

No gun law is a legal law per the constitution.
No gun law is in accord with the philosophy of the Founders who fought in our revolution. They are all legally consistant with the Constitution, though. Thanks to the Supreme Court choosing a broad interpretation (and their words being law), the government can virtually do anything it pleases with impunity.

May 12, 2003, 02:06 PM
Wow. While I have no idea about the answers for any of these questions, it sure points out the absurdity of the laws. Interesting to see the different answers to these questions.

It is unreasonable to think that the average citizen would be able to know the answer to these questions, given the complex laws we have on the books. Granted, with a couple hundred dollars worth of lawyer time you could probably figure them out.

Should we hold a dealer to a higher standard? Of course. Does that me that they (the dealers) should have everything memorized? If they have a question, should they call the ATF and invite scrutiny? Should they hire a lawyer at $100/hour to figure out what is legal? Should they just limit sales to those with no question at all (law enforcement contacts?)? Or should they take their best guess and spend the next 5 to 10 behind bars for ignorance of what the current policy is.

Just some questions to ponder.

May 12, 2003, 04:08 PM
01. Your gunsmith is incorrect. A preban magazine is not considered a "large capacity ammunition feeding device". If you modify the magazine and it no longer functions in it's original gun AND can hold over 10 rounds, it becomes a postban large capacity ammunition feeding device.


08. Have the individual bring to you only the shotgun barrel. Shorten the barrel and return to the owner. It is only illegal if you have both the <18" barrel and the receiver in your possession. Even if the undercover agent shortens the barrel, you never had the entire gun in your possession.

Of course, if he's gonna lie about the length, he could just as easily lie about you having the entire SBS.

May 12, 2003, 07:13 PM
my years as a criminal defense attorney handling drug and gun crimes as well as the gun business.

:what: :what: :what:


May 13, 2003, 11:26 AM
I noticed at the last gun show I was at, they were selling Butler Creek folding stocks for the mini-14, pinned in the open position (and some unpinned). Until the AWB sunsets, I would not feel safe owning one, because it would be too easy to be falsely accused.

May 13, 2003, 11:33 AM
Anyone see Hannity and Colmes last night? Sean Hannity mentioned something about this last night.

I'm paraphrasing but I could have sworn I heard him say that "The BATF was going to start busting people just so they could legitamize the ban."

May 28, 2003, 03:37 PM
So are they STILL at it?
How about an update?
When is the deadline for their bosses to have their stats in?
I wont even be buying a box of 22LR's until this is all over.

May 28, 2003, 05:26 PM
What if you don't know all 7.8 x 10E9 of them?

Then you shouldnt be in the business....

Please state the business you are in, Alaska. Then quote here, from memory, every local, state, and Federal law AND regulation pertaining to the lawful engagement of said business. If you can do that, you win the argument.

May 28, 2003, 05:52 PM
jeez... when even a simple, friendly "watch your six" warning gets turned into a privates-measuring spat... NO WONDER WE'RE IN TROUBLE.

Thanks Jim. Much appreciated.
Any way to get this news mainstreamed?


May 28, 2003, 06:55 PM
Thank you for veering us back to The High Road. I too was wondering why Hannity or Rush or some mainstream conservative voice hadn't picked up on this. Not doubting your tip. Alaska--just wondering where the usual sniffers have gone. :confused:

TFL Survivor

Sir Galahad
May 28, 2003, 07:11 PM
Are we talking about the same BATFE who was going around inspecting purchases of black powder by re-enactors and muzzleloaders for possible "terrorist activity"?:rolleyes:

"Well, they ALL have beards, sooo.....":rolleyes:

Double Naught Spy
May 28, 2003, 07:50 PM
The term "rampage" seems way over sensationalized here. Since when is it a rampage when a law enforcement agency is simply doing the job they are supposed to do?

Sir Galahad
May 28, 2003, 08:05 PM
Color me jumping off the deep end, but by that logic, it can be argued that the SS and Gestapo was just doing their jobs and never went on any rampage. Hmmm....seems they said that, too, at the Nuremburg Trials, but they were still hanged.

Jim March
May 28, 2003, 08:38 PM
Double Naught Spy: the information I have is that as reorganized under Ashcroft and the DOJ, the BATFE people are now forced to justify their jobs. As a result, they need arrests NOW. They do not care if the busts stick two years down the line. They're in "immediate panic mode".

So no, we're NOT talking about "just doing their jobs" sorts of things.

One example I was given was a guy properly and permanently converting old military rifle recievers to semi-auto, doing all the paperwork correctly, and getting arrested on charges of illegal full-auto sales. It won't stick, but meanwhile he's hassled to the max and they're hunting his customers.

Follow? Anything that looks even slightly fishy, or anything they can *frame* you on, they're gonna strike. It's that or the unemployment line.

You think there aren't a high number of BATFE agents who won't frame you to save their jobs? :scrutiny:

May 28, 2003, 08:53 PM
Jim March, no i would not.

I've had one of my pistols for sale on a large selling service via the internet.

I've had several offers, but once i informed the potential buyers, that all laws must be followed to the letter regarding the sale of this weapon, all have vanished.

I even had one guy suggest [over the phone] that i did not need to ship to a FFL holder or dealer... i laughed and asked him if he wasa federal agent trying to entrap me.. :neener:

Needless to say, i never heard from him again. ;)

Makes one wonder though... damm spooky.


Sir Galahad
May 28, 2003, 09:03 PM
When a civilian files a phony police report, he is arrested. When police file a phony police report, their union protects them. There need to be standards. And cops caught trampling rights, entrapping, and filing phony charges need to start doing jail time. Honest cops need to step up to the plate and not let these bad apples spoil the barrel and quit covering for those jackboots.

Jim March
May 29, 2003, 01:32 PM
Ya, but cops tend to cover for each other.

The most extreme example I know of is the "top cops" at the California DOJ covering up local-agency CCW misconduct on a grand scale. See also:


May 30, 2003, 01:47 AM
I'm inclined to believe that the ATF is now taking a 'shotgun' approach to enforcement. This happened just this afternoon in Walnut Creek:

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. -- Federal agents arrested a man in front of a United Parcel Service mail drop store Wednesday after they discovered three pipe bombs in a package that belonged to him.

Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms arrested the man shortly after he arrived at the store. They waited for him after serving a search warrant at the location.

At the store they discovered a package containing three pipe bombs, KTVU-TV reported late Wednesday.

Later in the evening, ATF agents scoured the man's home and emerged with what they told a reporter were two more pipe bombs. The agents removed the devices in red safety boxes.

Shocked neighbors stood down the street and watched into the evening as agents removed the explosives from the cordoned off area.

"That's pretty unnerving that someone that close to us would have explosives," said Carolyn Shepherd.

The arrested man's name was not released and he was scheduled to be arraigned Thursday in federal court in Oakland.

One of the local television stations aired this story tonight, with the usual vignette of the arrest, agents carrying a bolt action scoped .50 out of the home (not an illegal weapon, even in Kali, btw), statements from the ATF that he "was in possession of assault weapons, er illegal assault weapons," and interviews with timid neighbors (I wonder if there were supportive neighbors that got edited out). I wonder if the 'pipe bombs' that started all this were really just bottles of pyrodex...

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