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The supreme court has ruled against Abramski in the case challenging straw purchase rules. Essentially, he lied on the paperwork. The challenge to the law was that the transfer was from one non-prohibited person to another. And the checks were set up to stop transfers to prohibited persons.

Intent doesn’t matter.

13 Responses to “Intent”

  1. Paul Kisling Says:

    This is not the kind of case I worry about. If delve into the case we see that this was a result of the police and FBI not having enough evidence to prosecute Abramski for Bank Robbery so they settled on a gun violation.

    Personally I would not have argued this case on the guns rights model. I would have argued it on the malicious prosecution model. The Cops and Feds spent enormous time and resources to prosecute for robbery yet only found a charge that is almost never enforced??? No way that isn’t malicious and totally punitive.

  2. nk Says:

    Cry me a river. As long as it does not affect gift purposes, which it does not seem to. Why did this even go to the Supreme Court? We need public defender control.

  3. Backwoods Engineer Says:

    “Cry me a river?” This ruling is what the Obama gun grabbers have been waiting for! All lower courts have to do is start making rulings that private sales are illegal, and cite Abramski. You gave your kid a gun for their 18th birthday? ILLEGAL, cite Abramski! You sold a gun to your friend? He was not listed as the buyer on the 4473! ILLEGAL, cite Abramski! Lock you up and take away all your guns, and you are now a prohibited possessor for LIFE.

    This country is becoming a totalitarian hellhole.

  4. Bat Chain Puller Says:

    I went and read the court of appeals ruling. This case makes no sense at all. Abramski actually transferred the Glock to Uncle Alvarez through a FFL in PA after acquiring it from an FFL in VA. Abramski was OBVIOUSLY the ACTUAL BUYER since he later legally transferred it to Uncle Alvarez. The only reason the FBI even knew about the gun was because they found a receipt from Uncle Alvarez that was dated after the original Abramski purchase.

  5. The Jack Says:

    So the feds are punishing transferring a gun through an FFL?

    Okay then.

  6. Robin Says:

    Agree with backwoods engineer. This is worrysome as there will be an attempt to widen the window. Abramski’s mistake was in the documented order of operations. Depending on your point of view, the ruling either begs the question as to how long AFTER a transfer you must wait before selling to another is NOT a straw purchase or it makes poor lying a federal offense. Who said the rats is Washington don’t have high standards?

  7. JTC Says:

    *Prior* intent does matter…dude intended to sell the gun to his unc prior to buying it, as documented by his agreement to “get it for you wholesale”, and the check. He’s maybe a bank robber and definitely stupid, so I’m not too broken up about him getting jammed up.

    In fact I’d like to turn the key myself to lock his ass up for giving a tool to anti’s to be misused every chance they get, as Engineer said. A SCOTUS cite is a powerful thing, and this dumbass handed it to them on a silver platter. Fuck him.

  8. Kevin Baker Says:

    The ONLY thing that makes this transaction a “straw sale” is that he got the money from his uncle up front instead of during the transfer. That’s it. The five-Justice majority hung a man out because he got the money FIRST.

    Anybody remember the legal concept of mens rea? When did that get thrown out?

    It was my understanding (and apparently the understanding of four Supreme Court Justices) that a “straw sale” was a purchase for a PROHIBITED PERSON, but I guess not.

    Remember boys and girls! If you want someone to buy a gun for you, pay them AFTERWARDS and you’ll be golden.

    Pay them FIRST and you get to go to the Graybar Hotel.

  9. Jim W Says:

    The real problem was that:

    1) the actual statute requires the purchaser provide certain information truthfully to the dealer, which does not include “I am not purchasing this on behalf of others”

    2) for years, the ATF told congress very different interpretations of the law:
    a) 1960s-70s version- we don’t consider it a crime if a person buys with intent to give it to another, even a prohibited person
    b) 1980s version- we don’t consider it a crime if a person buys with intent to give it to a non-prohibited person
    c) 1990s version- we consider a crime to answer any question on the form untruthfully, even if the statute doesn’t require the information

    3) rule of lenity requires the ample ambiguity be resolved in favor of the defendant

  10. JTC Says:


    “It was my understanding (and apparently the understanding of four Supreme Court Justices) that a “straw sale” was a purchase for a PROHIBITED PERSON, but I guess not.”

    Not. Read Tam’s piece this morning.

  11. mikee Says:

    The officer fraudulently obtained a discount by purchasing the gun using a discount program for LEOs, with the intent of saving his uncle money.

    This is a case of misuse of one’s official status to fraudulently obtain a financial benefit. Officer claimed the purchase was for official use, when it was simply to save the uncle $150 or so.

    Simple fraud. Guilty as sin.

    Now I have to read the actual decision to determine what the Supreme Court liberals did to gun-gifting laws.

  12. Lyle Says:

    Chilling effect.

  13. JTC Says:

    I’m pretty pissed at NRA et al too for pushing/bankrolling this particular case of questionable merit and laughable empathy factor.

    There are a shit-ton of cases where Bloomie and Co. pulled setups that put some good FFL’s out of business, that could have gone a long way toward a narrow SCOTUS definition of what a strawman deal is and isn’t, but instead now we have this abomination for anti’s to cite.

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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