(Daily360.com) – Experts are warning gun dealers in gun-friendly states to be wary of whom they sell to despite any laws they feel support the sales. Particularly regarding Wyoming gun dealers selling to Colorado citizens, there could be dangers for the sellers. Although the states border each other, the gun laws are very different with Coloradans having far fewer gun-buying freedoms.
Gun dealers in the past had little to worry about as the responsibility to know the laws before making purchases used to lie solely with the buyer. For example, if a Colorado resident went into Wyoming store and purchased an AR-15 rifle despite that weapon being illegal in Colorado the Wyoming gun seller would bear no responsibility regarding where the purchaser then took the weapon.
Christopher Crofts, the former U.S. attorney for the District of Wyoming is cautioning gun dealers to re-think the safety they believe their state offers them. He says Wyoming dealers should find out if a potential gun buyer is from Colorado and if so only sell weapons allowed by Colorado law. He says the current version of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has been “weaponized” to target gun sellers. He says the Biden administration has directed the agency to pursue what they call “rogue” gun sellers. This now includes gun merchants who make paperwork errors and could include those who sell guns to a resident of a state or city where that gun is illegal.
Crofts says the best advice he can offer to gun sellers in situations like this is to always cover themselves as best they can. He says just because your state does not require a background check and thus you did not know your customer was from out of town, you may not be absolved from potential liability. He believes going forward “willful ignorance” may not be a defense from the ATF. He urges dealers to heavily consider the current state of federal agencies regarding gun sales and act accordingly.
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