New Report: Online Gun Sellers Transfer Tens of Thousands of Guns Without Background Checks
Dec 12, 2013
A new investigation by Mayors Against Illegal Guns has found that hundreds of high-volume private sellers are undermining public safety by transferring tens of thousands of firearms every year over the internet without conducting background checks.
The new report, In the Business, Outside the Law, concludes that nearly one-in-three gun ads on Armslist.com are posted by high-volume sellers, who sell large numbers of firearms without a license -- even though federal law requires anyone who's "engaged in the business" of selling guns to have a Federal Firearms License (FFL).
The investigation, which ran between August 2013 and October 2013, found that 58 percent of high-volume sellers gave indicators that they illegally engage in the business of selling firearms in at least one other way -- including selling guns new or in original packaging, selling guns for profit, or buying and reselling guns in a short period of time.
We examined 125,562 ads posted on Armslist.com by private sellers between August and April, and found that nearly one-in-three gun ads are posted by high-volume unlicensed sellers. At that rate, they could illegally transfer 243,800 guns each year.
This investigation follows a September report on buyers with criminal records using the internet to illegally buy guns without background checks.
Read the full report here.