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bwiese
05-09-2006, 4:45 PM
Rebuttal to DOJ May 9 memo:

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

IMPORTANT NOTICE
California Department of Justice Information Regarding the
Sale/Possession of Unnamed AR -15/AK 47 “Series” Firearms


The Department of Justice (hereafter the Department) has received numerous inquiries from the public and firearms industry personnel about the legality of various AR15/AK 47 “series” style firearms that have not been named by the Department as “series” assault weapons. The Department believes that the public and law enforcement are best served by reference to the generic definition of assault weapons set forth in SB23, rather than reliance upon a scheme of identifying assault weapons by name. Therefore, the Department will not update the list of “series” assault weapons.
OK, fine. If you don’t like fixed magazines, we can go detachable: thousands upon thousands of these new AR15-pattern “off-list” rifles missing a cheap plastic pistol grip are perfectly legal. They shoot just fine, and can legally accept legally-owned high-capacity detachable magazines – such a configuration is not described anywhere within PC §12276.1.
SB23 has banned the possession, sale and manufacture of firearms with the characteristics of assault weapons as defined in California Penal Code §12276.1 since January 1, 2000. A semiautomatic centerfire rifle with the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and any of the generic features listed in Penal Code §12276.1(a)(1) is contraband unless it was registered prior to January 1, 2001. It is illegal to manufacture, cause to be manufactured, distribute, transport, import, keep for sale, offer or expose for sale, give or lend such a weapon, except as permitted by law.
Wrong! While SB23 registration period ended 12/31/00, the DOJ allowed any owner-identified AR15 or AK47-pattern "series" firearm to be registered during the Kasler gap from 1 Jan 2001 through 22 Jan 2001 – regardless of presence or absence of any attached charateristic features.
Law enforcement officials, firearm dealers and the public should be aware that semiautomatic centerfire rifles that are modified to be temporarily incapable of accepting detachable magazines, but can be restored to accommodate detachable magazines, are assault weapons if they have any of the features listed in §12276.1(a)(1).
This is incorrect. Restoration capability is irrelevant, as one key controlling factor is the current regulatory definition, California Code of Regulations, §978.20(a). This defines term ‘detachable magazine’ in relation to the PC 12276.1 generic assault weapon definition, ahd is a triggering factor for assault weapons status:
“[D]etachable magazine’ means any ammunition feeding device that can be removed readily from the firearm with neither disassembly of the firearm action nor use of a tool being required. A bullet or ammunition cartridge is considered a tool.

Ammunition feeding device includes any belted or linked ammunition, but does not include clips, en bloc clips, or stripper clips that load cartridges into the magazine.”
A rifle with a fixed 10-round magazine that is affixed to the rifle has magazine honoring the word and spirit of CCR 978.20(a) in the converse: such a magazine takes “tools and time” to remove and cannot be considered a detachable magazine. A rifle with a fixed magazine installed is clearly not capable of accepting a detachable magazine.

There is no concept of permanency of attachment or amount of time to remove such a magazine codified in the relevant regulations or statutory law. If a magazine takes a tool or tools to change, and is not readily replaceable in the normal course of operation of the rifle, it is not a detachable magazine. In fact, this regulatory definition establishes standards for removal! (However, if a fixed magazine were to be removed, items like pistol grips and other §12276.1(a)(1) "characteristic features" must first be removed beforehand - as removal of a fixed magazine from a pistol-gripped rifle would constitute manufacture of an assault weapon.)

Fixed-magazine “off-list” rifles are simply not described by the statutory definition of assault weapon, since the triggering “detachable magazine” attribute defined in current regulations was not instantiated. The legislative intent of the 12276.1(a)(1) definition was to disallow new firearms in certain patterns from having magazines that could readily be changed in course of rifle operation: a fixed magazine not described by 978.20(a) can't be removed or replaced during shooting.

The fact that the magazine 'could' be or is capable of being removed with tools is also not relevant as that is 'construction' upon a lawful rifle, and previous a DOJ letter signed by Deputy AG Tim Rieger indicates constructive possession concepts do not apply to assault weapons. And aside from the above, significant lenity issues regarding interpretation of "capable of accepting..." phrase would also apply due to equality in interpretation of multiple senses of the phrase.

Additionally, existing designs of Stoner-pattern receivers that have received DOJ approval can readily be modified in short time to open magazine well configuration: one can be changed with a pocketknife, another with a screw driver to pop out a rivet. One other vendor of approved modified-for-California Stoner-pattern receivers even offers to reverse his work if the person wishes to move out of state. Clearly, these modifications are not permanent, nor are there any regulatory standards determining permanence of attachment.



The Department intends to exercise its power pursuant to Penal Code section 12276.5(i) to adopt regulations as “necessary or proper to carry out the purposes and intent” of California law to ban assault weapons in the state.”
You have just admitted that these fixed magazine rifles comply with the statute and regulations, and you found the necessity of changing the regulations in the future - since the current combination of laws and regulations simply doesn't describe the fixed-magazine rifles discussed here as assault weapons.

Individuals who own firearms that meet the generic definition of assault weapons banned by SB23 must do one of the following in order to comply with existing law: remove the features, sell the firearm (without the features), or permanently alter the firearm so that it cannot accept a detachable magazine.
This is apparent. Individuals owning what you just described above have committed crime(s) described by PC 12280(b), at the very least, and perhaps PC 12280(a).

However, individuals owning an “off-list” rifle receiver with an affixed non-detachable magazine (compliant with the converse of the CCR §978.20(a) definition) have committed no crimes since they do not have a firearm banned by name, nor is that firearm described by any generic definition (which, in turn, is shaped by regulatory definitions of “characteristic features”).

It remains illegal to possess assault weapons banned by name (either in statute or regulation), unless those assault weapons are registered and possessed in accordance with state law. The time limits for registration, which depend on the make and model of the assault weapon, are set forth in Penal Code §12285.

Old news. We've known this since 1999.

This memo does not have force of law, and can merely be regarded as a possible statement of future actions by DOJ.

It is rather interesting that this memo is not signed, nor is it dated, nor is detailed contact info provided.

Author M. Hollis ('hollism'), are you afraid to sign your name? Or did you just let someone else use your PC?



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383green
05-09-2006, 5:10 PM
Your analysis and rebuttal seem reasonable and correct to me.

Now, is there anything that we can do to help the DOJ correct the, er, um, geometrically improbable co-axial location of their cranium and rectum about the same centroid? ;)

Diabolus
05-09-2006, 5:13 PM
Your analysis and rebuttal seem reasonable and correct to me.

Now, is there anything that we can do to help the DOJ correct the, er, um, geometrically improbable co-axial location of their cranium and rectum about the same centroid? ;)


Thats the best question yet; is there anything we can do to change this?

brando
05-09-2006, 5:20 PM
Donate to the NRA?

CowtownBallin
05-09-2006, 5:42 PM
I'm saying the public needs to be made aware that the DOJ is not doing their job, these rifles only differ from registered assault weapons by a 99 cent pistol grip, etc :D

BigMac
05-09-2006, 5:48 PM
I'll have you know those pistol grips cost 5 bucks in alot of AR parts kits ;)

bwiese
05-09-2006, 5:49 PM
I'll have you know those pistol grips cost 5 bucks in alot of AR parts kits ;)

I got some AR pistol grips for $0.99 at a gunshow. They were M16A1 take-offs.

James R.
05-09-2006, 5:53 PM
Honestly making a requirement that you weld or glue the mag in place is outrageous. What happens when the feed lips of that magazine begin to wear? Are we supposed to toss out the lower because the permanently bonded magazine has failed? All I can see servicing is the follower and the mag spring, beyond that you're screwed since the feed lips are an integral part of the magazine body which is in turn glued or welded to the gun. It's totally impractical...the bolt it in place sporting conversions type solutions should be good enough. Anything else is IMHO unreasonable and goes against the spirit of the law as currently written...

I'm just waitin it out...I've spent $500~600 on dumber things to be sure...

Regards,

James R.

drclark
05-09-2006, 6:02 PM
I posted this in the long thread but it will probably get lost in the noise.

What about using .22lr or other rimfire upper/conversion kit? By definition, that would comply with the "features" definition since the law specifically calls out centerfire rifles only.

Wouldn't that allow you to legally shoot your a "fully featured" off-list AR in public at the range while still retaining the ablity to easily convert back to a centerfire platform if you ever move out of state?

Could I have a centerfire upper in my safe next to a "fully featured" off-list rimfire rifle? Do Ca laws have a "constructive intent" clause?

drc

slickjoesd
05-09-2006, 6:04 PM
Bill Wiese you are my hero! you make everything all better. I take my hat off to you! thanks for evrything you do!

Cobrarlc
05-09-2006, 6:09 PM
The battle has only begun. Stand together and the war will be won by law abidding citizens.

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 6:14 PM
Everyone call the DOJ tomorrow and ask them what they advise you to do with your SKSs and FALs.

calAWBsux
05-09-2006, 6:14 PM
For crying out loud! if illegal immigrants can unite to fight for "their rights," why can't we, as US CITIZENS, fight for our 2nd Amendment rights??

slickjoesd
05-09-2006, 6:15 PM
Laughing uncontrolable at wes.... lol x 100000000000

Jicko
05-09-2006, 6:25 PM
What's DOJ's fax num.... it is so hard to get to a person on their phone line....
I'd like to submit to them 20 different ways to fix a magazine... and ask them what's perm and what's is not....

Or... maybe I should ask them... when are they going to put out the next memo....

dwtt
05-09-2006, 6:43 PM
[QUOTE=bwiese]Rebuttal to DOJ May 9 memo:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The Department believes that the public and law enforcement are best served by reference to the generic definition of assault weapons set forth in SB23, rather than reliance upon a scheme of identifying assault weapons by name. Therefore, the Department will not update the list of “series” assault weapons.
OK, fine. If you don’t like fixed magazines, we can go detachable: thousands of these new AR15-pattern “off-list” rifles missing a cheap plastic pistol grip are perfectly legal. They shoot just fine, and can legally accept legally-owned high-capacity detachable magazines – such a configuration is not described anywhere within PC §12276.1.[/indent] [QUOTE=bwiese]

I'm already there. At the next bay area Calgun get together, I'll bring my rifle and everyone can shoot some rounds through it. Even the DOJ monitor here can shoot it, but you'll have to supply your own magazines and ammo. No way am I letting a DOJ mole handle my precious 30-rd magazines.
http://i49.photobucket.com/albums/f276/dwtt/Cimg0092.jpg

Technowizard
05-09-2006, 6:47 PM
Your analysis and rebuttal seem reasonable and correct to me.

Now, is there anything that we can do to help the DOJ correct the, er, um, geometrically improbable co-axial location of their cranium and rectum about the same centroid? ;)

The DOJ is not going to "correct" anything. As I just posted in the original memo anouncement thread.... the memo has not been signed. No one in the State of California Government has taken responsibility for the memo. It is meaningless and powerless. It has no binding effect, and is not an offical stance of the DOJ.

Just have ol Bill... or hell any of his damn deputies... send you a copy of that memo SIGNED by one of them!!! Its not going to happen...

Technowizard

grammaton76
05-09-2006, 7:11 PM
What about using .22lr or other rimfire upper/conversion kit? By definition, that would comply with the "features" definition since the law specifically calls out centerfire rifles only.

As the various 22LR threads have indicated, avoid the conversion kits. The uppers are considered safer by other folks (including myself) provided that they won't accept anything but dedicated 22LR magazines. The V-22 upper does meet these criteria, plus it's not removable without tools. I imagine a slight extension of the DOJ's stance would say, "It's ok as long as you weld the upper on."

Wouldn't that allow you to legally shoot your a "fully featured" off-list AR in public at the range while still retaining the ablity to easily convert back to a centerfire platform if you ever move out of state?

Could I have a centerfire upper in my safe next to a "fully featured" off-list rimfire rifle? Do Ca laws have a "constructive intent" clause?

As covered on other 22LR threads, CA does not have a constructive possession clause.

hoffmang
05-09-2006, 7:14 PM
Bill,

Is there any value in writing a clarifying letter that forces DOJ to admit more plainly that current law is that stripped lowers remain legal and that anything that requires tools to remove is not a detachable magazine?

It is hard to resist attacking a retreating enemy. My personal political analysis here is that this is a stall tactic and we will not see the regulatory process opened.

stator
05-09-2006, 7:25 PM
Your rebuttal-fu is weak tonight. That qoute is from the CCR which the AG does based upon the law and the legislative intent. I like how you tried to spin that as if it was PC 12276.1. It is not. Since the law, PC 12276.1, never mentions a "tool" but only defines a magazine as: "Magazine" shall mean any ammunition feeding device", the AG has alot of latitude in considering legislative intent. In fact, PC 12276 makes no mention of "time".

He will use it, file the proposed amended CCR to the OAL. You will have your 45-day to review and file feedback, but there is no vote. No law exists that requires the AG to take your feedback and implement your suggestions. The OAL will update the CCR afterwards leaving you free to file suit in any county Superior Court. It will not be an underground regulation either so that route is not available.

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 7:44 PM
Stator, when they change the definition of a detachable magazine, that is going to make a whole lot of previously legal firearms assault weapons. When that happens, those firearms will most likely need to be given a registration period. This is what everyone wants and most certainly not what the DOJ wants. The DOJ will not be officially changing the definition of a magazine. The only thing they can do is put out BS memos that have no effect on anything what so ever. I am calling them tomorrow to ask them what I do with my personal SKS and the 16 SKS I have sold in the last two months. They now appear to be assault weapons.

gh429
05-09-2006, 7:56 PM
Anyone else think the smart play for the DOJ is to ignore the definition of detachable magazine completely?

Wouldn't the smart play be to define "capacity to accept"? Something along the lines of "capacity to accept" means the ability to accept a detachable magazine without altering the physical characteristics of the rifle frame?

Then things would be set in stone wouldn't they? Not only do DOJ blessings (of certain rifles) stand, there would be no contradiction to existing law and no "registration period."

Fjold
05-09-2006, 7:58 PM
Stator, when they change the definition of a detachable magazine, that is going to make a whole lot of previously legal firearms assault weapons. When that happens, those firearms will most likely need to be given a registration period. This is what everyone wants and most certainly not what the DOJ wants. The DOJ will not be officially changing the definition of a magazine. The only thing they can do is put out BS memos that have no effect on anything what so ever.

Wes, I was going to post the same thing but you beat me to it. I have a fixed magazine, self loading rifle built in accordance with existing law. If the DOJ or CA Legislature change the definition of "detachable magazine". I will then have to register it as an "Assault Weapon".

hoffmang
05-09-2006, 8:06 PM
gh429,

There are a whole host of guns beyond just the AR/AK like weapons that would all of a sudden be considered AW's under that interpretation.

One of the last rights we do have is property rights and not even the 9th can say that someone can take something from you without just compensation. That's why grandfather clauses (which registration in this case would be) exist.

Major Miner II
05-09-2006, 8:08 PM
gh429,

There are a whole host of guns beyond just the AR/AK like weapons that would all of a sudden be considered AW's under that interpretation.

One of the last rights we do have is property rights and not even the 9th can say that someone can take something from you without just compensation. That's why grandfather clauses (which registration in this case would be) exist.
They can, if they want, take things with due process. They don't need just compensation.

Just look at all of the property confiscated for being used in a crime.

gh429
05-09-2006, 8:12 PM
gh429,

There are a whole host of guns beyond just the AR/AK like weapons that would all of a sudden be considered AW's under that interpretation.

One of the last rights we do have is property rights and not even the 9th can say that someone can take something from you without just compensation. That's why grandfather clauses (which registration in this case would be) exist.

Hmmm which guns? Maybe I"ll go pick some of them up :)

Maybe the way I said it, it didn't make a whole lot of sense (and it's why I'm not a lawyer hehe). But from the perspective of having to weld or epoxy, it's conceivable that the DOJ can come up with a definition of capacity to accept that will require a non-reversable therefore permanently fixed magazine... The basis for this of course would be the rifles that already have the DOJ blessing such as the Bushmaster, Vulcan, Fab10, etc. And alteration to the PC and CCR 978 would not be needed. Simply an add-on covering their asses...

artherd
05-09-2006, 8:47 PM
The OAL will update the CCR afterwards leaving you free to file suit in any county Superior Court.
Works for me, let's party.

xenophobe
05-09-2006, 8:53 PM
It's just a memo.... once they realize that any change in regulatory definition may trigger an open ended SB-23/Category 3 registration period, they will quickly change their mind.

I've been saying this for the past week or so, since the idea of changing definition was brought up. It's not going to happen. DOJ will see (or read) the error of their ways, pull this memo, and be even more confused.

PanzerAce
05-09-2006, 8:54 PM
It's just a memo.... once they realize that any change in regulatory definition may trigger an open ended SB-23/Category 3 registration period, they will quickly change their mind.

I've been saying this for the past week or so, since the idea of changing definition was brought up. It's not going to happen. DOJ will see (or read) the error of their ways, pull this memo, and be even more confused.

While I think they will change their mind, I dont think itll be fast. After all, the last memo was up for a couple of months, all the while with CGN saying it wouldnt work, before they tried something new.

gh429
05-09-2006, 8:58 PM
I'm not sure I understand why a change would trigger registration? For example if an additional section to the CCR is simply added defining "capacity to accept" there would be no rifles that I'm aware of that are automatically converted by a regulation change into an AW.

Our lowers remain as they were - lowers that need either a welded / epoxied mag or one without a pistol grip. No rifle as far as I'm aware of was "approved" by the DOJ with anything less than an epoxied or welded magazine. Therefore the DOJ's position on detachable mags and capacity to accept has remained consistent from the beginning...

???

zenthemighty
05-09-2006, 9:07 PM
I'm not sure I understand why a change would trigger registration? For example if an additional section to the CCR is simply added defining "capacity to accept" there would be no rifles that I'm aware of that are automatically converted by a regulation change into an AW.

Our lowers remain as they were - lowers that need either a welded / epoxied mag or one without a pistol grip. No rifle as far as I'm aware of was "approved" by the DOJ with anything less than an epoxied or welded magazine. Therefore the DOJ's position on detachable mags and capacity to accept has remained consistent from the beginning...

???

What about those of us who already have our lowers built into functioning rifles?

Also.. DoJ approval is a moot point. The current definition of "Detachable" is pretty explicit. I believe there were also some letters from the DoJ that basically said as long as ou can't operate the mag release with just your hands/feet/teeth, you were o.k..

bwiese
05-09-2006, 9:23 PM
Your rebuttal-fu is weak tonight. That qoute is from the CCR which the AG does based upon the law and the legislative intent. I like how you tried to spin that as if it was PC 12276.1. It is not.

The definition of AW here depends on _both_ the main 12276.1 statutory AW definition and the various 978.20 features defintions.

As of now, the rifles stand as legal since, by 978.20, we do not have a detachable mag, by definition.

Since the law, PC 12276.1, never mentions a "tool" but only defines a magazine as: "Magazine" shall mean any ammunition feeding device", the AG has alot of latitude in considering legislative intent. In fact, PC 12276 makes no mention of "time".

Yes, just the broad concept "tools + time". Really, it's the concept that a mag can't be changed in normal operational fashion.

But right now we do not have AWs. Our fixed mag rifles are LEGAL.

He will use it, file the proposed amended CCR to the OAL. You will have your 45-day to review and file feedback, but there is no vote. No law exists that requires the AG to take your feedback and implement your suggestions. The OAL will update the CCR afterwards leaving you free to file suit in any county Superior Court. It will not be an underground regulation either so that route is not available.

The underground regulation is the SIDE EFFECT. The direct regulation is clear. Sure, the DOJ can change the detachable mag definition. But that will likely trigger AW status on already-owned, currently-legal fixed mag rifles and make them assault weapons.

As such, a 90 day registration period must open. Intent of AW law was not to ban - but to register existing owners and allow them to keep their AWs. AW registration is nondiscretionary: if something that's a currently legal firearm becomes an AW, it must be registerable.

There is no statutory law requiring anyone to modify an existing legally-owned firearm that transitions to AW status. If you have the gun already you don't have to backtrack.

The owner of such a newly-declared gun has an option to destroy or surrender or move said new AW out of state, but he can register if he chooses to do so. And if DOJ opens a reg period, they cannot refuse to register guns in the class or make/model that was opened - except for stolen gun issues, ineligible registrant (felony, nonresident?, indicted, etc.) etc.

gh429
05-09-2006, 9:25 PM
What about those of us who already have our lowers built into functioning rifles?

Also.. DoJ approval is a moot point. The current definition of "Detachable" is pretty explicit. I believe there were also some letters from the DoJ that basically said as long as ou can't operate the mag release with just your hands/feet/teeth, you were o.k..

Unfortunately then those of us who used sporting conversion kits mis-interpreted the law... This happens all the time. If a sporting conversion kit was approved by the DOJ I would imagine we would have a legal leg to stand on. But as far as I'm aware the sporting conversion kit without epoxy or welding was never approved by the DOJ.

In my opinion the current definition of detachable is irrelevant, a detachable is and always has been a detachable magazine. In my opinion, the DOJ clarified the definition of "capacity to accept" today, which is within their authority to do so.

blacklisted
05-09-2006, 9:26 PM
Unfortunately then those of us who used sporting conversion kits mis-interpreted the law... This happens all the time. If a sporting conversion kit was approved by the DOJ I would imagine we would have a legal leg to stand on. But as far as I'm aware the sporting conversion kit without epoxy or welding was never approved by the DOJ.

In my opinion the current definition of detachable is irrelevant, a detachable is and always has been a detachable magazine. In my opinion, the DOJ clarified the definition of "capacity to accept" today, which is within their authority to do so.


The DoJ did not clarify anything today, so I don't know where you got that.

It's a memo, and they did not officially update any definitions.

bwiese
05-09-2006, 9:29 PM
I'm not sure I understand why a change would trigger registration? For example if an additional section to the CCR is simply added defining "capacity to accept"

...there would be no rifles that I'm aware of that are automatically converted by a regulation change into an AW.

Well, there are 5000? 7000? who knows? off-list rifles with fixed mags.
These are currently legal.

Also SKSes (and prob some other rifles too) would be involved.

Such a redefinition would likely transition them into AW status. There is no law mandating you change your gun. AW law is set up so that when something you legally own and legally acquire becomes an AW, a _mandatory_ registration period opens. Registration during open reg period is not conditional and must be granted if applicant is not a felon, gun is not stolen or NFA or otherwise illegal, etc.


Our lowers remain as they were - lowers that need either a welded / epoxied mag or one without a pistol grip. No rifle as far as I'm aware of was "approved" by the DOJ with anything less than an epoxied or welded magazine. Therefore the DOJ's position on detachable mags and capacity to accept has remained consistent from the beginning... ???

Lack of DOJ approval does not mean illegality or noncompliance. They may hold higher standards for their 'approval' letter.

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 9:29 PM
In my opinion the current definition of detachable is irrelevant, a detachable is and always has been a detachable magazine. In my opinion, the DOJ clarified the definition of "capacity to accept" today, which is within their authority to do so.No. Opinions are like buttholes, everyone has one and they all stink. Opinions don't hold up in court very well. Facts and law do. The facts and the law are very clear. Just because the DOJ puts out a memo means nothing. For example, what parts of the February 1st memo are still in effect? Nothing. No more catagory 4. No more list. Do not pay attention to DOJ memos. Pay attention to the law. The DOJ does not make the law. Until they change the CCR, a detachable magazine is still defined as a magazine that requires the use of a tool to remove.

If you are going to listen to the DOJ memo as gospel, then you will need to contact them and ask them what you are to do with your detachable magazine SKS that is now an assault weapon.

bwiese
05-09-2006, 9:32 PM
Unfortunately then those of us who used sporting conversion kits mis-interpreted the law... This happens all the time. If a sporting conversion kit was approved by the DOJ I would imagine we would have a legal leg to stand on. But as far as I'm aware the sporting conversion kit without epoxy or welding was never approved by the DOJ.

Again, lack of approval does not mean illegality or noncompliance.

In my opinion the current definition of detachable is irrelevant, a detachable is and always has been a detachable magazine. In my opinion, the DOJ clarified the definition of "capacity to accept" today, which is within their authority to do so.

Yes, it is in their authority to do so.

But until express other than in a memo and codifed into California Code of Regulations, it has ZERO legal force. That's not just me saying this, this is from an attorney. The DOJ didn't even have the b*lls to sign the memo.

And if they do so they open a whole new can of worms... with same effect as listing, and possibly triggering AW status for other guns as well.

gh429
05-09-2006, 9:35 PM
I think the DOJ memo clarified a damn lot today. It states specifically that sporting conversions are not legal per SB 23. Therefore anyone who has built up their rifles using sporting conversions is now in violation of SB23 and potentially can be charged with possessing an assault weapon.

As far as I'm concerned this memo gives the green light for any LE to arrest for sporting conversions, and any DA to prosecute for sporting conversions. Whether or not cases are thrown out by judges is irrelevent - those using sporting conversions are now (and more than ever before) subject to prosecution.

I guess my question was - are there any rifles (including non-AR series) that employ a pinned magazine similar to a sporting conversion (without epoxy, etc.) that received specific approval by the DOJ for sale in cali?

RRangel
05-09-2006, 9:38 PM
Really? Why do we have penal codes and other laws then? Why not just a bunch of memo's from the DOJ?

That doesn't make sense.

I think the DOJ memo clarified a damn lot today. It states specifically that sporting conversions are not legal per SB 23. Therefore anyone who has built up their rifles using sporting conversions is now in violation of SB23 and potentially can be charged with possessing an assault weapon.

As far as I'm concerned this memo gives the green light for any LE to arrest for sporting conversions, and any DA to prosecute for sporting conversions. Whether or not cases are thrown out by judges is irrelevent - those using sporting conversions are now (and more than ever before) subject to prosecution.

I guess my question was - are there any rifles (including non-AR series) that employ a pinned magazine similar to a sporting conversion (without epoxy, etc.) that received specific approval by the DOJ for sale in cali?

gh429
05-09-2006, 9:40 PM
No. Opinions are like buttholes, everyone has one and they all stink. Opinions don't hold up in court very well. Facts and law do. The facts and the law are very clear. Just because the DOJ puts out a memo means nothing. For example, what parts of the February 1st memo are still in effect? Nothing. No more catagory 4. No more list. Do not pay attention to DOJ memos. Pay attention to the law. The DOJ does not make the law. Until they change the CCR, a detachable magazine is still defined as a magazine that requires the use of a tool to remove.

If you are going to listen to the DOJ memo as gospel, then you will need to contact them and ask them what you are to do with your detachable magazine SKS that is now an assault weapon.

Where would you think the local DA as well as the local LE obtain their information as to whether or not a firearm is legal per California law? Calguns? Or the DOJ? You have got to be kidding me when you say a DOJ memo means nothing. A DOJ memo means EVERYTHING until a judge says otherwise. LOL

RRangel
05-09-2006, 9:42 PM
It's not that hard. Anyone can have an opinion inlcuding the heads at the DOJ, but that doesn't make it law.

Where would you think the local DA as well as the local LE obtain their information as to whether or not a firearm is legal per California law? Calguns? Or the DOJ? You have got to be kidding me when you say a DOJ memo means nothing. A DOJ memo means EVERYTHING until a judge says otherwise. LOL

thmpr
05-09-2006, 9:43 PM
I think the DOJ memo clarified a damn lot today. It states specifically that sporting conversions are not legal per SB 23. Therefore anyone who has built up their rifles using sporting conversions is now in violation of SB23 and potentially can be charged with possessing an assault weapon.

As far as I'm concerned this memo gives the green light for any LE to arrest for sporting conversions, and any DA to prosecute for sporting conversions. Whether or not cases are thrown out by judges is irrelevent - those using sporting conversions are now (and more than ever before) subject to prosecution.

I guess my question was - are there any rifles (including non-AR series) that employ a pinned magazine similar to a sporting conversion (without epoxy, etc.) that received specific approval by the DOJ for sale in cali?


Ohh really? I totally disagree on your assessment. So that means all fixed mag kits that was sold within the past 6 months and installed on a fully built rifle is now illegal? So why was there no arrest/s for the past 6 months at any range which definately had LEO/DOJ agents present. Or why several guns stores that was selling the kits were never approached by the DOJ or LEOs. They have publicaly stated what they have in their stores and yet never confronted. hhhhmmmm?????

bwiese
05-09-2006, 9:44 PM
Where would you think the local DA as well as the local LE obtain their information as to whether or not a firearm is legal per California law? Calguns? Or the DOJ? You have got to be kidding me when you say a DOJ memo means nothing. A DOJ memo means EVERYTHING until a judge says otherwise. LOL

A memo has ZERO legal force. They didn't even sign or date it ferchrissakes.

What kind of car do you drive, what kind of stereo do you have? I'll have someone write a memo telling you to give them to me.

If you read my rebuttal in detail you note that they said one thing but then said they had to change the regulations ;) That's a clear indication of insufficiency.

bwiese
05-09-2006, 9:46 PM
And here comes the important point: That change in the rules will affect a few FALs (maybe hundreds of them), which in and of itself would not be a big deal (with apologies to the FAL owners). But the important thing in my mind is that owners of AR receivers should immediately buy mag lock kits like the Sporting Conversions kit, and lock their mags down, and attach pistol grips. If my reading of the situation is correct, they have at that point a currently legal rifle. Then if the DoJ had the courage to change the detachable mag regulation, they would suddenly be faced with 30000 AR registrations, in addition to a few FALs. In addition to making a terrible mess, of retroactively changing something (like a CaliFAL) to an AW way after the fact.

I think in the face of this terrible prospect (of having 30000 + 100 new SB23 AWs, plus countless screwups and a bevy of lawsuits), the DoJ will reconsider the ill-fated plan of changing the "detachable mag" definition, and will instead amend the Harrot - Roberti/Roos list of receivers listed by name. Which is a much more sane way (sane from the DoJ point of view) of doing AW regulation in the first place.

Again, if AND ONLY IF my logic is right, the important thing to do is to right now outfit every offlist AR receiver in the state with a mag that is fixed, and can be removed by a tool, plus a pistol grip. But my logic could be wrong. If it is wrong, we could be creating 30000 felons (bad thing to do) instead of 30000 AWs (good thing to do).

Before anyone goes out and does what I propose, please wait for the more experienced people to chime in (this means you, Glen Avon, and also Bill Wiese and artherd and the usual suspects, I want you to find a flaw in my logic, because you seem to know what you're talking about). Also, Glen seems to suffer less from confusion between his wishes and his analysis of the situation than many of the flamers and trolls and tin-foil-hat wearers around here, so I want him in particular to be the contrarian thinker here.

As a matter of fact, I am taking my Stags this weekend and putting pistol grips, LPKs and fixed 10rd mags on them and mating them to my existing uppers.

I await their de facto declaration as assault weapons if and when detachable mag or other phraseology is changed.

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 9:52 PM
A DOJ memo means EVERYTHING until a judge says otherwise.LOL back to you. Think about this for a minute. What has the DOJ said in every actual letter they ever sent out to someone about off-list lowers in the early days? It goes something like this, "Despite what we say, there are 58 DAs in the state who do not have to agree with our interpretation and they could still declare your firearm an assault weapon." THE DOJ EVEN SAYS THEIR OPINION DOESN'T MEAN A DAMN THING!!!

I think you must have just showed up here, because we have been discussing what a worthless piece of trash the February 1st memo was for months now. That memo was worthless and this memo is worthless. My DA will not be putting any kind of authority behind this memo, period. Seriously man, this memo means jack. If you don't believe us, go talk to an attorney.

Major Miner II
05-09-2006, 9:53 PM
So Bill. . .here's how I see things possibly happening.

Give me your opinion.

If I were DOJ, I would tackle the Time + Tools section of the CCR code, and basically say that, because of confusion in the past, they are *further* defining the idea of how much time and what type of tools.

I don't think they'll actually remove anything, simply add in the "intrest of clarity"

That also gets past the "but this has been legal in the past" argument.

Thoughts?

gh429
05-09-2006, 9:53 PM
Ohh really? I totally disagree on your assessment. So that means all fixed mag kits that was sold within the past 6 months and installed on a fully built rifle is now illegal? So why was there no arrest/s for the past 6 months at any range which definately had LEO/DOJ agents present. Or why several guns stores that was selling the kits never approached by the DOJ or LEOs. They have publicaly stated what they have in their stores and yet never confronted. hhhhmmmm?????

1. Yes
2. Because it was not determined to be illegal until today
3. See #2

You know this reminds me of the whole fixed magazine definition / capacity to accept thread several weeks ago. Off-hand I mentioned the DOJ might take this route to get them out of a difficult position rather than listing, only to be ridiculed and shot down. Funny how it seems to be the same situation. :p

blacklisted
05-09-2006, 9:57 PM
1. Yes
2. Because it was not determined to be illegal until today
3. See #2

You know this reminds me of the whole fixed magazine definition / capacity to accept thread several weeks ago. Off-hand I mentioned the DOJ might take this route to get them out of a difficult position rather than listing, only to be ridiculed and shot down. Funny how it seems to be the same situation. :p

It was not determined to be illegal today.

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 10:07 PM
2. Because it was not determined to be illegal until todayOr instead of calling a lawyer, just keep stating what is clearly not reality. THE DOJ MEMO MEANS NOTHING!

gh429
05-09-2006, 10:09 PM
1. It is my opinion that it is the DA who determines whether an act is legal or illegal. A judge or jury either affirms or reverses this determination. That is my opinion, if YOU feel either a LE officer or a judge / jury determines whether an act is legal or illegal I respect that. That is your opinion, and there are different opinions of the law. If there were not we would not need judges. In practice it just costs more to reach that determination.

2. It is my opinion that the today the DOJ ruling identified the "sporting conversion" as inconsistent with the "capacity to accept" language of 12276.1 and that CCR 978 "detachable magazine" plays no relevance in the capacity to accept. If you feel that the definition of "detachable magazine" is integral for the consistency of PC 12276.1 - I can respect that. In practice I feel there is increased risk of prosecution with todays memo and I am not desirous of being prosecuted for a felony.

3. It is my opinion that the DOJ exercised rule making today by creating an opinion as to the definition of "capacity accept". It is my opinion that the DOJ's opinion will stand up to legal challenge and will cause increased prosecution of AW violations due to reasons #1 and #2. If you disagree I can see where you're coming from and respect that.

4. I hope everyone (including myself) will re-evaluate our positions and draw the most logical and common sense conclusion.

Cheers

for #1 DA / Prosecutor / DOJ

Major Miner II
05-09-2006, 10:09 PM
Or instead of calling a lawyer, just keep stating what is clearly not reality. THE DOJ MEMO MEANS NOTHING!
You just say that because you don't want Pryde to have any guns.

*ducks*

blacklisted
05-09-2006, 10:12 PM
5) Your opinion means about as much as the memo you refer to.

This memo is not official, they did not change the definition of detachable magazine.

1. It is my opinion that it is the DA who determines whether an act is legal or illegal. A judge or jury either affirms or reverses this determination. That is my opinion, if YOU feel either a LE officer or a judge / jury determines whether an act is legal or illegal I respect that. That is your opinion, and there are different opinions of the law. If there were not we would not need judges. In practice it just costs more to reach that determination.

2. It is my opinion that the today the DOJ ruling identified the "sporting conversion" as inconsistent with the "capacity to accept" language of 12276.1 and that CCR 978 "detachable magazine" plays no relevance in the capacity to accept. If you feel that the definition of "detachable magazine" is integral for the consistency of PC 12276.1 - I can respect that. In practice I feel there is increased risk of prosecution with todays memo and I am not desirous of being prosecuted for a felony.

3. It is my opinion that the DOJ exercised rule making today by creating an opinion as to the definition of "capacity accept". It is my opinion that the DOJ's opinion will stand up to legal challenge and will cause increased prosecution of AW violations due to reasons #1 and #2. If you disagree I can see where you're coming from and respect that.

4. I hope everyone (including myself) will re-evaluate our positions and draw the most logical and common sense conclusion.

Cheers

for #1 DA / Prosecutor / DOJ

bwiese
05-09-2006, 10:12 PM
1. It is my opinion that it is the DA who determines whether an act is legal or illegal. A judge or jury either affirms or reverses this determination. That is my opinion, if YOU feel either a LE officer or a judge / jury determines whether an act is legal or illegal I respect that. That is your opinion, and there are different opinions of the law. If there were not we would not need judges. In practice it just costs more to reach that determination.

The DA often uses a crime lab to do such evaluations. Santa Clara County crime lab, for example, would not consider these to be AWs :)



2. It is my opinion that the today the DOJ ruling identified the "sporting conversion" as inconsistent with the "capacity to accept" language of 12276.1 and that CCR 978 "detachable magazine" plays no relevance in the capacity to accept. If you feel that the definition of "detachable magazine" is integral for the consistency of PC 12276.1 - I can respect that. In practice I feel there is increased risk of prosecution with todays memo and I am not desirous of being prosecuted for a felony.

I ain't either - and most folks know I'm one of the most cautious people w.r.t CA AW law.

Furthermore, my discussions with a gun attorney today give me great comfort.


3. It is my opinion that the DOJ exercised rule making today by creating an opinion as to the definition of "capacity accept". It is my opinion that the DOJ's opinion will stand up to legal challenge and will cause increased prosecution of AW violations due to reasons #1 and #2. If you disagree I can see where you're coming from and respect that.

Rulemaking??? Only when it is in the CCRs is it a law/rule.

zenthemighty
05-09-2006, 10:12 PM
1. Yes
2. Because it was not determined to be illegal until today
3. See #2

You know this reminds me of the whole fixed magazine definition / capacity to accept thread several weeks ago. Off-hand I mentioned the DOJ might take this route to get them out of a difficult position rather than listing, only to be ridiculed and shot down. Funny how it seems to be the same situation. :p

Show me the regulation that says its illegal?


Memo to gh429

Given the pending illegality of your lowers please send them all to me in order to avoid prosecution.

Zen T. Mighty
Self Proclaimed Memo God

There we go. Its now a memo, so it must be true and followed. All your lowers are belong to me.

gh429
05-09-2006, 10:17 PM
So me the regulation that says its illegal?


Memo to gh429

Given the pending illegality of your lowers please send them all to me in order to avoid prosecution.

Zen T. Mighty
Self Proclaimed Memo God

There we go. Its now a memo, so it must be true and followed. All your lowers are belong to me.

When you:

1. Are the attorney general of this state

AND

2. Have the authority to bring an armed force of law enforcement officers to my door

THEN I will gladly comply. :)

xenophobe
05-09-2006, 10:21 PM
Right. Anyone can be potentially charged with possessing an AW, whether they have one or not. This memo makes it much more likely that LE and DA will file such charges. This will be an extremely big hassle for the poor sob who gets arrested and charged (I don't want to spent 48 hours in the county lockup, and spend $10K of my own money to fight the charge).

This is bull****. They will not send this memo out to Law Enforcement.

As it stands now, the law does not support thier new memo and any case that would face a judge would rule based on existing law, which would prove bad case law for the DOJ and they will lose.

This is just an example of more empty threats by the DOJ. They don't want to see a case go down now, because they'll lose. This is fear mongering propaganda at best. At worst, it's just a stall tactic because they don't really know what to do, so they're just trying to freak everyone out, and after a few weeks of calls regarding the status of FALs, SKSes, and possible triggering of open-ended Category 3 registration will make DOJ rethink this and post a new memo yet again.

They're just trying to keep lower sales to a minimum until they list, at least that's my opinion, and I'm sticking to it. lol

artherd
05-09-2006, 10:23 PM
1. It is my opinion that it is the DA who determines whether an act is legal or illegal. A judge or jury either affirms or reverses this determination.

No. A DA is the entity who files criminal charges, alleging that so-and-so broke such-and-such law.

A Judge or Jury decides the Matters of Fact at hand, did so-and-so break the law.

The DA is little more than tattle-tale. The JUDICIAL SYSTEM decides law. Period.

2. It is my opinion that the today the DOJ ruling identified the "sporting conversion" as inconsistent with the "capacity to accept" language of 12276.1 and that CCR 978 "detachable magazine" plays no relevance in the capacity to accept.
Your opinion is not consistant with either law or fact.

Having the "capacity to accept" a Fixed magazine is NOT a feature!

for #1 DA / Prosecutor / DOJ[/QUOTE]

artherd
05-09-2006, 10:26 PM
They're just trying to keep lower sales to a minimum until they list
I could not agree more.

gh429
05-09-2006, 10:26 PM
Rulemaking??? Only when it is in the CCRs is it a law/rule.

Sorry, you and everyone else has my apologies. I am using "rule making" wrong (too many glasses of wine at this point hehe).

DOJ opinions is NOT part of the rule making process. DOJ opinions represent a clarification of existing law when the law is either obscure or unclear. As I remember AG (or DOJ) opinions hold the weight of law UNTIL it is over-turned by either a judge or statues.

Again, it is my opinion that the DOJ clarified "capacity to accept" today (as it was originally undefinied) to the detriment of sporting conversion kits

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 10:29 PM
As I remember AG (or DOJ) opinions hold the weight of law UNTIL it is over-turned by either a judge or statues.No. We have consistently pointed out to you this is not the case. You need look no further than DOJ letters sent in respones to questions of off-list lower legality. The DOJ themselves state that their opinion does not have to be recognized by any of the 58 DAs. DOJ Opinion is most certainly not law or we would all be registering catagory 4 lower right now. Quit spreading this high and mighty DOJ rumor as we keep telling you it is not true and the wine keeps making you miss this important fact.

bwiese
05-09-2006, 10:33 PM
Sorry, you and everyone else has my apologies. I am using "rule making" wrong (too many glasses of wine at this point hehe).

DOJ opinions is NOT part of the rule making process. DOJ opinions represent a clarification of existing law when the law is either obscure or unclear. As I remember AG (or DOJ) opinions hold the weight of law UNTIL it is over-turned by either a judge or statues.

This is in NO WAY a formal opinion letter. It has no legal weight. It ain't even signed or dated.

Again, it is my opinion that the DOJ clarified "capacity to accept" today (as it was originally undefinied) to the detriment of sporting conversion kits

Regardless of what they say in the memo, until things are redefined in CCRs nothing has changed.

gh429
05-09-2006, 10:34 PM
No. A DA is the entity who files criminal charges, alleging that so-and-so broke such-and-such law.

A Judge or Jury decides the Matters of Fact at hand, did so-and-so break the law.

The DA is little more than tattle-tale. The JUDICIAL SYSTEM decides law. Period.


Your opinion is not consistant with either law or fact.

Having the "capacity to accept" a Fixed magazine is NOT a feature!

for #1 DA / Prosecutor / DOJ[/QUOTE]

To believe that would be to be looking at our legal system in a vacuum. In terms of the penal code, it can be easily argued that EVERYONE involved in the criminal justice process interprets the law. The traffic cop that arrests you after searching yoru car and finding your sporting conversion kit AR is intepreting the law. The assistant DA who reviews the arrest and decides whether or not to press charges is intepreting the law. And of course the judge inteprets the law during your trial.

You are correct that having the capacity to accept a fixed magazine is not a feature. However the DOJ memo today has created the opinion (which has the force of law) that you are NOT ELIMINATING the capacity to accept feature by placing a magazine secured by a sporting conversion kit in place of where a detachable magazine would go. In other words a temporarily fixed magazine does not eliminate a capacity to accept. In other words "capacity to accept a detachable magazine" exists regardless of whether or not a fixed magazine is temporarily secured in your rifle. THEREFORE if you have a pistol grip AND the capacity to accept a detachable magazine which is NOT eliminated by a magazine secured by a sporting conversion kit, you are in violation of 12276....

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 10:39 PM
However the DOJ memo today has created the opinion (which has the force of law)LOL. When are you going to get it. Unsigned, undated DOJ memos do not have the force of law!!! HELLO! I am done responding to your posts until you sober up. :p

gh429
05-09-2006, 10:41 PM
LOL ok ok, I'm tired now. :)

Look I think today's opinion has the force of law, because I am a believer in that the DA's have the power to interpret and enforce law. In practice I believe this is true because it is the DA's that will be charging you with possession.

That said, the majority of you are intelligent people that have intelligent arguments, and for the most part while I disagree with your arguments I can see the logic in them.

Even SCOTUS judges rarely agree regarding the law, how much more a bunch of gun enthusiasts on calguns? I think we're going to have to agree to disagree. :)

bwiese
05-09-2006, 10:43 PM
Look I think today's opinion has the force of law, because I am a believer in that the DA's have the power to interpret and enforce law. In practice I believe this is true because it is the DA's that will be charging you with possession.

Yes but the existing law and definitions are so clear that that's moot.
The fact that DOJ says they have to update the regulations proves their lie.
[/QUOTE]

tenpercentfirearms
05-09-2006, 10:49 PM
Look I think today's opinion has the force of law, because I am a believer in that the DA's have the power to interpret and enforce law. In practice I believe this is true because it is the DA's that will be charging you with possession.What the DA decides to do with you has nothing to do with the memo. They can do what ever they want irregardless. The DOJ has already stated that a DA can charge you for whatever they want. So I guess if you want to be technically correct in some crazy fashion, sure this thing has the force of law. Whatever. Will it stand up in court? NOT A CHANCE IN HELL. A real judge is going to look at this and laugh his butt off. Harrott was a case where a judge slapped down the DOJ for over stepping their bounds. It will happen again.

So if you want, state that it is still up to each of the 58 DAs to determine what is prosecutable and what is not. That is fine, I accept that. Saying that this memo has the force of law is being misleading at best. It is just another line of opinions in a whole line of opinions that when weighed against what really matters, established law passed by a legislature and signed by a governor, these opinions don't stand a chance.

So does that mean my DA can then state that catagory 4 is still in place then? Sure it does. Does that mean it is law? I don't think so if the judge throws it out. Really I think we are playing a semantics game.

Leadthrower
05-09-2006, 11:03 PM
Well this memo is just firing me up!.... Now I'm gonna buy and build as many more AK's as I can, because I can use my high-cap magazines w/o a pistol-grip on those. They're affraid of AR's, but terrified of AK's... So let's see how many I can build/buy before they change their minds on updating the list.:mad: :mad: :mad:

CALI-gula
05-09-2006, 11:05 PM
You know this reminds me of the whole fixed magazine definition / capacity to accept thread several weeks ago. Off-hand I mentioned the DOJ might take this route to get them out of a difficult position rather than listing, only to be ridiculed and shot down. Funny how it seems to be the same situation.

You know, this reminds me of several people over the past 6 months here on Calguns.net, including myself, previously noting that this approach would mean nothing has changed, there simply is no list of lowers by name, and the DOJ is acknowledging it. However it stops or bans nothing, and "Off List" lower and receiver sales may continue full force; build them in detachable mag configuration without SB23 features all you wish OR "fix" the magazine as noted below, and do as you wish, as previously discussed.

This has been accepted all along. If it has a detachable magazine, it can't have a pistol grip; a magazine bolted in is by definition permanently fixed. And the word "fix" comes from "affix" which means 1) to attach physically 2) to attach in any way. The AR's magazine release button or the AK's release latch only TEMPORARILY fix the magazine - the Sporting Conversions or Darin Prince magazine bolt-in kits PERMANENTLY fix the magazine and prevent it from moving out of place without dismantling a locking latch. With the latch or release, it can be readily removed, in the other, it can NOT be readily removed without a tool to void the permanence of preventing motion. A locking latch or bolt that needs a tool to remove the device is similar in manner to trigger locks which have been approved by the DOJ to permanently lock up a firearm to prevent tampering or removal.

The memo instructs me that so long as I use a muzzle brake or standard crown end, a regular rifle stock with no pistol grip, no grenade launcher, etc., then I can build these Off-List Lowers and receivers into configurations no different than any of the following legally owned rifles, currently sold in California. They are comprised of "Off List Lowers/Receivers" and have detachable magazines:

Springfield M1A,
Mini-14,
Mini-30,
Kel-tec SU16 (A,B, or CA),
Browning BAR Safari II,
Remington 7400,
M1-Carbine,
Marlin Camp Carbine 9mm/.45ACP,
Ruger PC4 or PC9 Carbines,
Ruger M99/44 and M44 Carbines
Robinson Armament M96,
Czech Vz-52,
French MAS 49,
German Gewehr M41 & M43 based guns,
Tokarev SVT-40,
Swedish Ljungman/Egyptian Hakims,
Johnson 1941rifle,

and more, etc.

as none are listed by name, are semi-auto, and all have "detachable magazines". Just like Off List Lowers and Receivers if you build them that way!

Fate
05-09-2006, 11:23 PM
The memo instructs me that so long as I use a muzzle brake or standard crown end, a regular rifle stock with no pistol grip, no bayonet lug, etc.,
Bayonet lugs are not included in the "features" list that defines AWs in CA. ;)

CALI-gula
05-09-2006, 11:59 PM
DOJ opinions is NOT part of the rule making process. DOJ opinions represent a clarification of existing law when the law is either obscure or unclear. As I remember AG (or DOJ) opinions hold the weight of law UNTIL it is over-turned by either a judge or statues. Again, it is my opinion that the DOJ clarified "capacity to accept" today (as it was originally undefinied) to the detriment of sporting conversion kits

They have NOT clarified the "capacity to accept" by any means, as no device of permanence or lack or permanance is designated. NOTHING has changed, period.

Why "Again" with letting us know your opinion? It sounds as if you are starting to doubt your own opinion. If you are so satisfied with your opinion, why keep reporting back with variations of your celebration that the DOJ opinion is presenting your golden calf?

Does your opinion still acknowledge there will be a "Category 4" of Assault Weapons for the "Off List" lowers recently purchased? It should; though the "Category 4" memo and its contradictory amusing musings were removed from the DOJ website, the opinion MEMO has yet to be acknowledged as no longer valid.

Does the DOJ's opinion on confiscating Robinson Arms M96 guns in 2003 still convince you that the M96 is an Assault Weapon under this recent MEMO of opinion? Even though the DOJ later acknowledged their "capacity to accept" opinion at that time, which appears no different than this current MEMO, was NOT the law, and furthermore WRONG?

The previous example below proves that interpreting the "capacity to accept" fundamentals are no different than use of a tool to remove or not, and the Sporting Conversion/Prince bolt kits are considered PERMAMENT.

So which "OPINION" do you now choose? Read on...

CHAGRINED CALIFORNIA DOJ GUN POLICE RETURN IMPROPERLY CONFISCATED RIFLES DOJ Firearms Division's Own Agents Confused About What Constitutes An "Assault Weapon"

On November 25, 2003 the California DOJ announced the seizure of a number of illegal "assault weapons" from a Laguna Niguel gun dealer. One of the guns on display in the store was a Robinson Armament model M96 rifle. Believing this rifle to be an illegal "assault weapon," DOJ Firearms Division agents used the store's transaction records to locate each purchaser of the M96 rifle, then went door to door, often in the dead of night, confiscating the firearms under threat of criminal prosecution. One such raid was
videotaped. No compensation was offered for the seized firearms.

Only problem: the M96 rifle is perfectly legal and is not an "assault weapon." Thankfully, higher ups at the DOJ Firearms Division got involved at the urging of CRPA and others, and reversed the Agents' interpretation.

The confiscations illustrate the difficulty in determining whether a firearm is an "assault weapon." Even the specialized DOJ Firearms Division's own agents, with their advanced training on the subject, couldn't tell. So, then how is the average gun owner supposed to know? The confusion inherent in the statute lead the District Attorneys in Fresno and Mendocino counties to file an unprecedented prosecutor vs. prosecutor lawsuit against the Attorney General over the vagueness of the law when it first passed. Hunt v. Lockyer (Fresno Superior Court #01 CE CG 03182) is still being litigated, and challenges the 1999 amendment to the state's "assault weapon" law that bans firearms based on their cosmetic features. The lawsuit points out that the law does not provide gun owners, dealers, police, or prosecutors with sufficient guidance to determine what features on a firearm are prohibited so they cannot enforce the law fairly and unilaterally or determine how to
comply with it. A letter from District Attorney Hunt explaining the lawsuit is available at the CRPA's website.

In seizing the M96 rifles, the DOJ Firearms Division agents mistakenly believed that the model M96 was illegal because of one statutory definition of an "assault weapon" includes any semi-automatic centerfire rifle with the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and a conspicuously protruding pistol grip. Although the M96 does not have a pistol grip, the agents wrongfully believed that the "capacity to accept" provision applies to both the detachable magazine and the pistol grip. The agents believed the M96 was an "assault weapon" because it has the "capacity to accept" a pistol grip - as many guns do.

"We have been aware of the confusion since this law was passed in 1999," said CRPA spokesman Chuck Michel. "The practical effect of that confusion is that the law has created a whole class of accidental felons in California."

CRPA attempted to clear up the pistol grip issue last year when its attorneys wrote DOJ for clarification. Luckily, DOJ's written responses were available to prove the DOJ's Agents were wrong. Using those previous DOJ responses, attorneys from both the CRPA and Robinson Armament were on the phone with DOJ immediately after the raids started.

"We had to e-mail the DOJ copies of their own documents that detail specifically why the M96 is not an 'assault weapon'" said Robinson Armament attorney Jason Davis. "These kind of 'mistakes' by DOJ terrorize law abiding customers and damage my client financially."

Approximately one week after seizing the model M96 rifles, DOJ's Agents began returning the model M96 rifles to their owners.
http://www.lawyertalk.org/_CRPA_Chagrined_California_DOJ_Gun_Police_Return_I mproperly_Conf-26639881-269-a.html (http://www.lawyertalk.org/_CRPA_Chagrined_California_DOJ_Gun_Police_Return_I mproperly_Conf-26639881-269-a.html)
My OPINION is the DOJ has an "INCAPACITY to accept" their ineptitude !!!!!

.

CALI-gula
05-10-2006, 12:08 AM
Bayonet lugs are not included in the "features" list that defines AWs in CA. ;)


YOU ARE MOST CORRECT!! I think I was mislead because I am SURE I saw an OPINION on it somewhere!

(Actually, I knew that - my typing must have got on a roll of old discussion topics.) :rolleyes:


.

jdberger
05-10-2006, 12:20 AM
I guess that this might have to go to court.

This reinforces that we need to take a hard look at who we elect to the Superior Court. It was a friendly judge that gave us Harrott, hopefully we can find the same here.

So if you aren't registered to vote, please do so.
If you haven't recieved your sample ballot, please do so.

And finally, if you live in the Thirteenth Congressional District, don't vote for Pete Stark. Vote for anyone else. Just vote NO on Pete.

saki302
05-10-2006, 2:31 AM
I suspect there are two or more DOJ agents who issue these memos and gleefully read the posts on this list while blowing coffee out their nose. Many folks are taking things hard when there is really nothing hard to be taken.

Yet. Save the energy for the real fight later- or not if they simply do not list. Then buy away of you like.

-Dave

Sawdust
05-10-2006, 6:16 AM
Thanks, Bill, for the rebuttal - nicely done.

I suggest everyone relax and go about their business as usual.

As was said earlier in the thread, this memo has zero force of law and is just meant to slow the sale of lowers while the DoJ continues their group mind meld regarding how to deal with this "situation".

As you were.

Sawdust

DrjonesUSA
05-10-2006, 11:37 AM
It seems to me that the memo just said a whole lot of nothing.

Anybody else agree?

Major Miner II
05-10-2006, 11:44 AM
It seems to me that the memo just said a whole lot of nothing.

Anybody else agree?
Ummmm. . .no.

DrjonesUSA
05-10-2006, 11:47 AM
Ummmm. . .no.


Why precisely do you disagree?

PIRATE14
05-10-2006, 11:52 AM
Well it tells you that they don't intend to list at this point......but so what they said that they would list a few months ago as regular AW and than CAT IV AW.......

They said that u can build them fixed mag but now they say that your idea of fixed doesn't meet their definition of fixed.....so what at this point....

And any DAs can still prosecute which, they've always said off and on....

LEO can take your rifles and check them out but they've always been able to do this anyway........

Not much change.......stay w/in current AW laws and your still good to go........buy, sell, and shoot:eek:

Major Miner II
05-10-2006, 12:01 PM
Why precisely do you disagree?
They said they weren't going to list and that they're going to change the CCR.

Seems a bit of something to me.

May not happen that way, but they did say something.

Saying nothing would go. . .a little something. . .like this:

Given the recent inquiries into the legalities of currently purchased firearm parts, it is the opinion of the Department of Justice, which is charged by state law with maintaining and updating the list of "series" assault weapons is the appropriate department to answer these questions.

As of now, all questions that are being directed at this department should continue to not be directed at other departments, and they have little or no authority, unlike this department.

Furthermore, internal communications have shown that answers to questions posed to this department should continue to be answered, as this is in the best interest of all involved.

Now THAT is saying nothing.

odysseus
05-10-2006, 3:12 PM
Bill, nicely done as usual.

Question: If the DOJ is basically going to sit on their rumps on this issue and just threaten vaguely in a "memo" that even the locked magazines are at issue, what is it that can compell this issue to be thrusted forward to perhaps force the hand of them being compliant to the laws around them to register these items per Harrott? Whatever it is I think it needs lawyers.

45Auto
05-10-2006, 3:33 PM
This latest memo would seem be a "letter of intent" about what the DOJ hopes to implement. It doesn't carry the weight of the law. So, we are now in a situation in which:
a. Off-list lowers are legal as long as I don't add an "evil" SB23 feature; they can continue to be bought and sold via regular FFL channels in California.
b. I can build up a detachable mag AR 15 type rifle equipped with the "tumoroid" hand hold (not a "conspicuous protruding pistol grip")
c. Fixed mag versions that are not the FAB 10 or the Vulcan or the new Bushmaster still fall under the AW definition.
d.My off list lower is legal to possess as long as I keep it a stripped lower.

Except for point c, nothing has changed. And with regard to point c, the "new" DOJ definition is not fixed in law (yet). So, the sale of off-list lowers in California will contuinue to be legal for the indefinite future. This poses a real dilemma for the DOJ: The continuing sale of off list lowers means that perhaps several hundred thousand of these receivers could come into the state while the DOJ and the legislature fiddle. It took fully ten years to implement Roberti-Roos and about 4 years to implement SB 23. The Legislature simply cannot move any faster than that. Its clear that DOJ wants to resolve this issue without opening a registration period. I would think that one way or another, this is going to end up in a ten year court battle and/or a lot of people are going to have an AR receiver as a paperweight.

Fate
05-10-2006, 3:56 PM
this is going to end up in a ten year court battle and/or a lot of people are going to have an AR receiver as a paperweight.
Well then in the meantime, go gripless, fixed stock, no flash hider and that paperweight can legally accept detachable mags and go blammity-blam, just fine and LEGALLY.

xenophobe
05-10-2006, 5:42 PM
c. Fixed mag versions that are not the FAB 10 or the Vulcan or the new Bushmaster still fall under the AW definition.

Except for point c, nothing has changed.

Point c. has not changed. DOJ has not given any opinion letters to any mag-lock kit, and has been pretty consistently saying since the git go that they are not legal over the telephone.

Justang
05-10-2006, 9:31 PM
So what are our actions now?
Do we notify local media all over California?
Do we start collecting money for a legal battle? And where do we send it to?
Do we just sit tight?
Or should we have a strike and call it "A day without a gun owner" and show them how important we are to society?

blacklisted
05-10-2006, 9:43 PM
So what are our actions now?
Do we notify local media all over California?
Do we start collecting money for a legal battle? And where do we send it to?
Do we just sit tight?
Or should we have a strike and call it "A day without a gun owner" and show them how important we are to society?

We're gonna need more cowbell!

MORE COWBELL!