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gunnut57
07-20-2009, 2:37 PM
A friend has a pistol in his posession that is legal to own in California. He got the pistol in a trade several months ago from a person who was not the registered owner. He now would like to get the firearm in his name, but is worried about possible repercussions, losing the piece or even ending up in jail. He's asking my opinion and procedure for doing this, but I really don't know the answer. I know there may be different opinions on this, let's hear them.

snobord99
07-20-2009, 3:15 PM
I did a quick look and it looks like most of the relevant PCs deal with the transferor, not the transferee so as far as any repercussions as to the transfer itself, he may me safe; however, if the gun is stolen, he's probably looking at at least receiving stolen property.

Big question is is the gun stolen (and I would assume it is)? That's HUGE here.

Take this with a giant grain of salt since I really didn't do much research into it. The only part I'm fairly certain of is the receiving stolen property if the gun is a stolen one.

I say turn it in. Personally, I'd rather lose my gun than my freedom, and I use the term loosely because if it's stolen it isn't mine.

evidens83
07-20-2009, 3:26 PM
Why would somebody buy a gun from somebody else knowing its not even registered to that person??? Sounds like trouble to me even if the gun was in fact not stolen or used in a crime. Too many variables and like the last poster said, I'd rather lose my gun than my freedom.

MasterYong
07-20-2009, 3:31 PM
"Got a pistol in trade from someone that was not the registered owner"??????

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If he knew it wasn't the registered owner, then he probably knew that it's not legal to "trade" for a handgun that is not in the possession of the registered owner.

Why worry about the legality now if he knew it wasn't legal then?

Did the guy that traded it to him say something like "yo I wanna trade this handgun. It's not registered to me but don't worry it's cool!"

Seems like there is some info missing here.

Stolen maybe?

snobord99
07-20-2009, 3:46 PM
Oh, and receiving a stolen property is a wobbler (can be either misdemeanor or a felony) so he could potentially lose more than this gun and his freedom. Fairly good possibility of losing ALL his guns.

gunnut57
07-21-2009, 5:27 AM
It was told to him that the gun was not stolen, but who knows for sure. Is there any way for a private citizen to check seriel numbers to see the history?

SCMA-1
07-21-2009, 6:13 AM
A friend has a pistol in his posession that is legal to own in California. He got the pistol in a trade several months ago from a person who was not the registered owner. He now would like to get the firearm in his name, but is worried about possible repercussions, losing the piece or even ending up in jail. He's asking my opinion and procedure for doing this, but I really don't know the answer. I know there may be different opinions on this, let's hear them.

Sounds like it was unlawfully transferred to him if they didn't do a PPT through an FFL at the time of trade.

http://ag.ca.gov/firearms/pubfaqs.php#9

SCMA-1

CSACANNONEER
07-21-2009, 6:18 AM
Why would somebody buy a gun from somebody else knowing its not even registered to that person??? Sounds like trouble to me even if the gun was in fact not stolen or used in a crime. Too many variables and like the last poster said, I'd rather lose my gun than my freedom.

What? There are plenty of legally owned, yet unregistered, handguns in CA. The only thing the two parties seem to have done wrong here is that they have not yet completeled the transfer and DROS prossess. Until that is completed, the transfer is not legal.

snobord99
07-21-2009, 7:03 AM
What? There are plenty of legally owned, yet unregistered, handguns in CA. The only thing the two parties seem to have done wrong here is that they have not yet completeled the transfer and DROS prossess. Until that is completed, the transfer is not legal.

This is true, but when a guy says he's not the registered owner, I usually take that to mean that he's not the actual owner of the gun, not just that it's not registered.

evidens83
07-21-2009, 7:48 AM
What? There are plenty of legally owned, yet unregistered, handguns in CA. The only thing the two parties seem to have done wrong here is that they have not yet completeled the transfer and DROS prossess. Until that is completed, the transfer is not legal.


They wouldnt be able to legally transfer the gun to him anyways because the gun isn't even registered to the seller. Correct me if I'm wrong. But the seller didn't seem to mind when he traded/sold to the buyer. Would you knowingly buy an unregistered gun from a stranger? He says its legit so it should be OK right? If it was truly legit both of you would know to go to a shop for a PPT. Especially nowadays with such ridiculous gun laws :TFH:

J-cat
07-21-2009, 8:10 AM
The "friend" in the OP needs to turn the gun in to his PD, obtain a receipt, and then claim it after 90 days or whatever their policy is for found property. They'll run the AFS, contact the registered owner, and the matter will be settled.

That's my theory. I haven't dun it myself. I don't break the law either.

CSACANNONEER
07-21-2009, 11:12 AM
They wouldnt be able to legally transfer the gun to him anyways because the gun isn't even registered to the seller. Correct me if I'm wrong. But the seller didn't seem to mind when he traded/sold to the buyer. Would you knowingly buy an unregistered gun from a stranger? He says its legit so it should be OK right? If it was truly legit both of you would know to go to a shop for a PPT. Especially nowadays with such ridiculous gun laws :TFH:

There are plenty of handguns legally tranfered in Ca that are not being transfered from any "registered owner". All the DROS does is verify the receiving party is able to legally transfer the gun and theoretically, it also checks to see if the gun has been reported stolen. I've never heard of a PPT or any other DROS being denied based on the seller's lack of "registration".

HowardW56
07-21-2009, 11:17 AM
WHat he did is more trouble than it's worth.....


ALways do a PPT.....

This doesn't help him, not sure what he should do...

magsnubby
07-21-2009, 11:26 AM
The "friend" in the OP needs to turn the gun in to his PD, obtain a receipt, and then claim it after 90 days or whatever their policy is for found property. They'll run the AFS, contact the registered owner, and the matter will be settled.

Not a good idea. "I got this gun in an illegal trade. i wanna register it in my name."

I don't know about your area, but here they would contact the registered owner and all he would have to do is say "I thought it was on my closet shelf. I must of been stolen." He gets his gun back, if it hasn't been used in an unsolved crime, and you're out of luck. If they can't find the registered owner then the keep the gun and destroy it. It's a lose lose situation.

HowardW56
07-21-2009, 11:45 AM
It's hard to undo a screw up like that... How old a gun is it?

snobord99
07-21-2009, 12:18 PM
Not a good idea. "I got this gun in an illegal trade. i wanna register it in my name."

I don't know about your area, but here they would contact the registered owner and all he would have to do is say "I thought it was on my closet shelf. I must of been stolen." He gets his gun back, if it hasn't been used in an unsolved crime, and you're out of luck. If they can't find the registered owner then the keep the gun and destroy it. It's a lose lose situation.

It may be a lose lose to turn it in, but I think I'd rather do that. First, you avoid possibly being caught with a stolen gun later. Second, well, you might be returning the gun to the RIGHTFUL owner and I personally think that that's the morally correct thing to do.

The best route, if you don't want to lose the gun or your gun rights, is probably track down the guy that gave him the gun, see if you can trace who it belongs to and see if you can do a valid PPT transfer with the actual owner.

ltspongebob
07-21-2009, 12:44 PM
I have a similar situation, except that I know the history of the pistol:

A LEO buys a pistol, then a few years later sells to a friend of mine also a LEO, but does not do a PPT (this is common for LEO's I found out)

A few years later this friend sells the pistol to me, but we hadn't done the PPT from the original owner.

In the mean time the original owner dies (not in the line of duty; cancer). So I am stuck with a pistol that is not in my name nor the person I bought it from.

I don't have this pistol listed and I don't mention the type because of potential issues in regards to the unknown.

I am sure that there are others in the situation, however out of fear of a "Gun Unit" we don't know what to do... Sad "State" of affairs...

xxdabroxx
07-21-2009, 12:55 PM
Call the local PD and have them run a check on the serial to see if it is stolen, then if all is OK then do a voluntary registration.

Again, how old is the gun? If it is old enough, it was most likely never registered in the first place.

MasterYong
07-21-2009, 1:16 PM
I have a similar situation, except that I know the history of the pistol:

A LEO buys a pistol, then a few years later sells to a friend of mine also a LEO, but does not do a PPT (this is common for LEO's I found out)


LEO's breaking the law, who'da thunk it? Gun laws no less? REALLY?

Reminds me of the police chief of Blue Lake CA recently that managed to have the entire department dissolved as a result of his misconduct. Rape, drugging, possession of unregistered AWs (FA MP5s IIRC).

Now Blue Lake has no PD at all.

LEO's breaking gun laws... NEVER!!! :rolleyes:

I've actually talked to a local LEO that LITERALLY thought he was exempt from the transfer laws. He freaked when he found out he wasn't, but wouldn't tell me why LOL

gunnut57
07-21-2009, 1:35 PM
Call the local PD and have them run a check on the serial to see if it is stolen, then if all is OK then do a voluntary registration.

Again, how old is the gun? If it is old enough, it was most likely never registered in the first place.


Will the local PD do a check without personal information?
And then, even if it doesn't come up stolen, can the original owner still come back and say he didn't know it ws missing.

I don't think the gun is old enough to have never been registered.

ke6guj
07-21-2009, 1:38 PM
IIRC, CG'ers that have called CADOJ (I know, they often give incorrect info) have been told that CADOJ would perfer to get the handgun registered now, to the correct person, and past paperless history wasn't a big deal. So, the OP's friend should have the guy he got it from do a PPT to the friend, or do a volreg on the handgun.

dwtt
07-21-2009, 3:20 PM
Why would somebody buy a gun from somebody else knowing its not even registered to that person??? Sounds like trouble to me even if the gun was in fact not stolen or used in a crime.

I have some pistols that aren't registered to me, and none of them were used in crimes or stolen. Did you know there were people in CA buying handguns in the 1980's before registration started. Bet you didn't know that.

CHS
07-21-2009, 4:24 PM
I have a similar situation, except that I know the history of the pistol:

A LEO buys a pistol, then a few years later sells to a friend of mine also a LEO, but does not do a PPT (this is common for LEO's I found out)

A few years later this friend sells the pistol to me, but we hadn't done the PPT from the original owner.

In the mean time the original owner dies (not in the line of duty; cancer). So I am stuck with a pistol that is not in my name nor the person I bought it from.


If you did a PPT at an FFL for the pistol, it doesn't matter who the original owner is. The pistol is now in your name and that's that. You are in the clear because your transfer was legal.

grumpycoconut
07-21-2009, 4:31 PM
I did a quick look and it looks like most of the relevant PCs deal with the transferor, not the transferee so as far as any repercussions as to the transfer itself, he may me safe; however, if the gun is stolen, he's probably looking at at least receiving stolen property.

Big question is is the gun stolen (and I would assume it is)? That's HUGE here.

Take this with a giant grain of salt since I really didn't do much research into it. The only part I'm fairly certain of is the receiving stolen property if the gun is a stolen one.

I say turn it in. Personally, I'd rather lose my gun than my freedom, and I use the term loosely because if it's stolen it isn't mine.

Hogwash. Recieving/Possessing stolen property is a specific intent crime. You have to know that the stuff is stolen to catch a smack for it. You might lose the gun but that should be about it.

snobord99
07-21-2009, 4:51 PM
Hogwash. Recieving/Possessing stolen property is a specific intent crime. You have to know that the stuff is stolen to catch a smack for it. You might lose the gun but that should be about it.

It's called circumstantial evidence, and I've actually conducted a prelim and bound over the guy for receiving stolen property (which happened to be a handgun). The detective specifically told me "I don't think it's his gun" (meaning I don't think he's the one that bought it on the street...not that it's not his b/c it was stolen) but there was enough circumstantially to at least bind him over for the charge. Bound over = possibility of conviction. I don't know what happened after that though since that happened towards the end of my internship.

Without knowing more, I'd say he could probably get away from the charge, but we have no idea what the circumstance of the transaction was to conclude that there's no way he'd get convicted (or at least bound over at prelim).

Now I said he's probably looking at at least receiving stolen property. I don't know that there'll be a conviction, but I'm saying there's at least a decent possibility.

snobord99
07-21-2009, 4:53 PM
If you did a PPT at an FFL for the pistol, it doesn't matter who the original owner is. The pistol is now in your name and that's that. You are in the clear because your transfer was legal.

Problem is he didn't and there's really no way to know right now if the gun is stolen and in NCIC as a stolen gun.

eccvets
07-22-2009, 3:26 AM
i say put it in a safe and keep it in a safe!

eccvets
07-22-2009, 3:31 AM
Hogwash. Recieving/Possessing stolen property is a specific intent crime. You have to know that the stuff is stolen to catch a smack for it. You might lose the gun but that should be about it.


that is good and right until a prosecuter decides you knew it was stolen and still accepted it and decides to charge you with possesion of stolen property. Lets say your friend can't afford a good lawyer and even if can, he gets convicted. He loses his freedom and now he is a felon for life. Now if he shuts his trap, throws the gun in a safe, and does not try to be a good guy, he continues to live his life just the same as he always has instead of getting butt f*cked in jail. Gee I wonder what he should do...???:rolleyes:

eccvets
07-22-2009, 3:34 AM
A lot of people have been convicted of much worst charges then stolen property such as murder on circumstantial evidence. In the end, why take the risk, seriously!

It's called circumstantial evidence, and I've actually conducted a prelim and bound over the guy for receiving stolen property (which happened to be a handgun). The detective specifically told me "I don't think it's his gun" (meaning I don't think he's the one that bought it on the street...not that it's not his b/c it was stolen) but there was enough circumstantially to at least bind him over for the charge. Bound over = possibility of conviction. I don't know what happened after that though since that happened towards the end of my internship.

Without knowing more, I'd say he could probably get away from the charge, but we have no idea what the circumstance of the transaction was to conclude that there's no way he'd get convicted (or at least bound over at prelim).

Now I said he's probably looking at at least receiving stolen property. I don't know that there'll be a conviction, but I'm saying there's at least a decent possibility.

eccvets
07-22-2009, 3:39 AM
Call the local PD and have them run a check on the serial to see if it is stolen, then if all is OK then do a voluntary registration.

Again, how old is the gun? If it is old enough, it was most likely never registered in the first place.


I would also pray to god the gun wasnt used in a crime because if it was and you used a cell or house phone or any other phone that can be connected to you, your gonna get a friendly visit from a police officer or perhpas a swat team...

CSACANNONEER
07-22-2009, 6:03 AM
I would also pray to god the gun wasnt used in a crime because if it was and you used a cell or house phone or any other phone that can be connected to you, your gonna get a friendly visit from a police officer or perhpas a swat team...

You've been whating too much CSI. Short of it being stolen, how the hell would anyone be able to tell if it was used in a crime just by the SN?

J-cat
07-22-2009, 6:13 AM
Because they know everything. I suggest we all stop typing cuz some prosecutor out there is about accuse us of connspiring to be an accessory after the fact.

snobord99
07-22-2009, 7:07 AM
You've been whating too much CSI. Short of it being stolen, how the hell would anyone be able to tell if it was used in a crime just by the SN?

+1

From what I've seen, they can figure out the make and model of the gun used, but not which particular gun it was. When they say "it was this particular gun" it's based on ballistics and the person in possession of it (meaning, gang member, was already a suspect and they happened to have a gun that matched the ballistics evidence or something along those lines).

Cjones38
07-22-2009, 7:18 AM
Call the local PD and have them run a check on the serial to see if it is stolen, then if all is OK then do a voluntary registration.


Sounds a bit shady, has the serial number been ground off :43:

ltspongebob
07-22-2009, 8:13 AM
i say put it in a safe and keep it in a safe!

It is in a safe and for the most part it stays in the safe. I take it to the range every once in a while, and while I would never be afraid to use it in a SD/HD situation, it is not my primary for that purpose...

Morally, I know I'm ok, the pistol was never listed as lost/stolen. It was never used in a crime.

Legally I don't know... Most LEO's I know(and thats a lot) tell me, that the large % of LEO's would question me, check the Serial #, look at my record (clean as a whistle), and send me on my way (it's not like I carry it around all the time), but there are always exceptions to that... Maybe I should get legal counsel.

While I may not like the laws that CA passes and I try hard to change them, they are currently the laws on the books.

J-cat
07-22-2009, 8:41 AM
Umm, no. Most LEO's would run the serial number, and do one of two things: If it is in AFS registered to someone else- confiscate it, or of it is not listed in AFS- let you keep it unless it is stolen.

eccvets
07-22-2009, 11:19 AM
You've been whating too much CSI. Short of it being stolen, how the hell would anyone be able to tell if it was used in a crime just by the SN?

when you call in and ask and they it comes up yes. a lot of times your guilty until proven innocent.

Jonathan Doe
07-22-2009, 3:33 PM
What is the serial number of the gun?

Anyways, having an unregistered gun is not a crime. Selling/ buying unregistered gun is not a crime if it is done through a FFL.

CSACANNONEER
07-22-2009, 8:45 PM
when you call in and ask and they it comes up yes. a lot of times your guilty until proven innocent.

Are you sure about this? I really doubt you know what you're talking about here.


What is the serial number of the gun?

Anyways, having an unregistered gun is not a crime. Selling/ buying unregistered gun is not a crime if it is done through a FFL.

I have to believe the expert here. After all, a man in his position has to know a little about this.

snobord99
07-22-2009, 9:36 PM
Are you sure about this? I really doubt you know what you're talking about here.

Hahah. Thank you. I was thinking it, but I didn't want to say it.

xxdabroxx
07-23-2009, 7:04 AM
Wow, :tfh: brigade!

Just call in the number and make sure its clean, if still worried, do a voluntary reg on it. If really paranoid, melt it in a forge.