The USPS restrictions are for the shipper, not the recipient. As long as the person is a 01 FFL, they can ship via USPS to any legal recipient which includes an 03 FFL holder in this case. The 03 FFL works for handguns and was basically designed for that, as long as they meet C&R criteria of course.
(That's a gorgeous S&W, by the way...)
This discussion has come up before, and the first time it was discussed, I reread the regs and later called the ATF and asked about this directly.
I'm pretty sure you're wrong on all these points. Put simply, handguns are different. You'll find a link to the regs below.
Here's a link to the pertinent regs: http://pe.usps.com/text/dmm300/601.htm#1198527
Handguns and other firearms capable of being concealed on the person are nonmailable unless mailed between the parties listed in 12.1.3 and 12.1.5 after the filing of an affidavit or statement required by 12.1.4 and 12.1.6,
The people who can use the USPS are dealer and manufacturers involved in the firearms business, and certain other individuals transferring weapons in an official capacity. These folks can only ship to other people in those specified groups/classes. Read sections 12.1.3 and 12.1.5, in the link above.
C&R licensee holders are NOT among the specified parties allowed to use the USPS to ship or receive handguns. Neither are individuals having their own handguns returned to them by a gunsmith or manufacturer.
You've gotten handguns through the mail? It happens, but it's not legal. I have an 03 (C&R) FFL and I once received a C&R pistol from CDNN in a shipment with a C&R rifle. I was really surprised, as I had expected the pistol to come in a separate UPS shipment.
C&R handguns cannot be shipped by a C&R FFL through the USPS. Wish they could, cause Priority Mail is a fraction of the cost of UPS or FedEx.
- An individual can ship (but not MAIL) a handgun to any FFL who is willing to receive from an non-FFL, but that FFL doesn't have to receive it; some will refuse.
- A FFL can ship (but not MAIL) a handgun to you directly, if it's already your weapon (as might be the case with a gunsmith returning the gun to you after a repair.)
When handguns are involved, and the recipient is a C&R licensee or an individual who owns the weapon, the FFL can ship to you directly, but can can't use the US Postal Service -- it's got to be FedEx or UPS.
As I said -- handguns are different.
If you've some newer regs or letter rulings that show that the information I've cited here is incorrect, please share it with us -- as I'd love to be able to use the US Mails more widely than I've been using it.