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Old April 18, 2013, 12:59 PM   #1
D_Anton
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BATFE denying form 4 because of arrests?

If you've read my other thread I've mentioned wanting to purchase a suppressor for my 308 but was concerned if my form might be denied because of two arrests on my record. One was for due traffic at 18 (misdemeanor ended up being dismissed at court). The other was for misdemeanor assault (Also dissmissed at a later time due to the other party refusing to press charges). I've been told that from these two arrests I could be denied, is this true? (I live in Texas if that matters)
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Old April 18, 2013, 07:43 PM   #2
James K
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NFA transfer applications go through the same process as the regular NICS check, so if you have purchased other guns there should be no problem with an NFA item. Federal law bans transfer/possession of firearms based on convictions, not on arrests or even trials.

Before someone asks, pleading guilty or no contest in a criminal case is a conviction for legal purposes.

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Old April 19, 2013, 08:39 AM   #3
Skans
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If the two cases are closed, both ending in dismissals (no adjudication) then you should have no problem. You can't be denied NFA or firearms transfer just based on an arrest (unless the case is still pending).
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Old April 19, 2013, 09:52 AM   #4
Willie Sutton
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Just one more data point, and not directly to a Form-4 application: A "Youthful display of patriotic enthusiasm" at the wrong place and time resulted in an arrest for discharging a firearm and illegal posession of a firearm when I was 18. The charges were soon dismissed, and all was well, for some 35 years. In that time I received security clearances, two different CCW permits, multiple pistol purchase permits (in NJ where they are required), and passed many NICS checks.

Then... I applied for a FFL.

The BATFE sent back my application "pending clarification" because they saw the arrest. The letter I recieved basically said "we see the arrest, we do not see a conviction, but neither do we see a dismissal or any other information". They informed me that I needed to provide a letter from the judicating authority stating the end result (dismissal, in my case). This took a LOT of time and trouble, lost records from 35 years ago. In the end they were found and the BATFE was happy. The final act on my part was to end the issue once and for all with an expungement of the arrest, which took 3 months and cost me $600.


The point is that the BATFE does look further than the basics in the NICS check. I passed those free and clear for years, but it was a hangup for the FFL. I can not say if it would have hung up a Form 4 (I never tried to get one thru before I had my record cleared) so I have no clue if this information is germane to your case.

I would apply and if it is kicked back, get the documentation to support your situation, submit it, and go on with life.


In my case I learned not to shoot a 12 guage in my backyard to celebrate the 4th of July.....


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Old April 19, 2013, 12:06 PM   #5
Skans
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That makes sense. The Constitution basically says individuals have a right to have firearms. It says nothing about any right to sell firearms for a living. I can see where BATFE could mess with someone in delaying their FFL over something like that.
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Old April 19, 2013, 01:45 PM   #6
Willie Sutton
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^^ Actually, they simply had an unresolved question, and wanted an answer. I can see where an arrest with no disposition "pro or con" would stimulate a question. Frankly, I am surprised the question was not raised much sooner in my history of (many prior) background checks. Once the question was answered BATFE issued the FFL without further correspondance.

So the takeaway is that BATFE uses more then the basic NICS check database. But... dunno what databse they use. The CCW applications and the security clearances I had been thru before were done thru the FBI and were never a problem. Just dunno.


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Old April 24, 2013, 01:12 PM   #7
GoingQuiet
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I think your info is bad.

Convictions are the issue. Not arrests.
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Old April 24, 2013, 02:27 PM   #8
Skans
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The way I understand it, if you have been arrested, but not convicted, the BATFE can refuse to "approve" you during a NICS background check. This gives them some time to check out the charges and see if they can lead to a conviction of something that would prohibit you from purchasing a firearm. If they don't give the dealer that called it in a denial within 3 business days, the dealer can transfer the firearm, but BATFE can come back at a later date and make the purchaser hand over the gun, if he is later convicted etc.

In a situation where someone has been arrested and charges dismissed or dropped, it is possible that BATFE doesn't have the disposition of action and the transfer can be delayed or denied for that reason.
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Old April 24, 2013, 03:12 PM   #9
Tom Servo
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Quote:
Convictions are the issue. Not arrests.
Actually, disposition is the issue. I've known several cases in which people were denied because the final disposition information wasn't correctly entered into someone's files or database.
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Old April 25, 2013, 07:22 AM   #10
Willie Sutton
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^^ What Tom said. This was exactly my problem (read above to my other posting)

Once I brought proof of favorable disposition all was well. But the onus was on me to prove the disposition of the case, which had not been entered "into the system, by the system". In my case I had to have a fingerprint card done, submitted it to the NJ State Police, had them run a background check on myself, and then provided the results to BATFE and all was well (and has been so ever since).


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