What Is A Straw Purchase?

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IL defense lawyerThe term “straw purchase” is a type of gun crime often used in reference to buying a firearm illegally. More specifically, it is when you go into a gun store and buy a firearm for a person who is legally prohibited from buying or possessing one. The reason the prohibited person might do this is fairly straightforward. He or she would be unable to honestly complete the process.

When you buy a firearm, you have to fill out a form and answer questions showing that you are legally allowed to buy and possess a firearm. The gun dealer then submits the form for review by the FBI, specifically by the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Checks System, or NICS for short, to review your criminal record.

The term has been in the news recently because the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago filed charges this week against an Indiana man for conspiring to straw purchase a handgun that was used in the shooting of two Chicago police officers, an incident that left one officer severely injured and the other dead.


Chicago IL criminal defense attorneyIn the United States, the right to own and carry a firearm is protected under the Second Amendment of the Constitution. However, there are certain acts and situations that may cause you to lose your right to own or carry a firearm. In addition, you could face criminal charges if you use a weapon to threaten someone or in the commission of another crime. A qualified criminal defense attorney can help you learn what you need to know about guns and weapons charges in the state of Illinois.

Not All Weapons Are Guns

While most weapons charges result from the illegal use or possession of a gun, not all are connected to a firearm. In fact, almost any object can become a weapon, depending on the circumstances. Examples could include everything from knives, swords, and switchblades to stun guns and brass knuckles. Use of these or any other dangerous weapons can lead to a criminal weapons charge under Illinois law.

Unlawful Use or Possession of a Weapon by a Felon

Those who have previously been convicted on felony charges are barred from using or possessing a firearm. This applies even if the felony conviction did not take place in the state of Illinois. If a felony offender ignores this ban, they are at risk of charges for unlawful use or possession of a weapon by a felon. At minimum, this is a Class 3 felony, which carries a penalty of up to ten years in prison for a first offense. A subsequent offense, or the possession of certain types of weapons, can lead to elevated charges and increased penalties.


Three Common Federal Firearm Laws

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Illionois defense attorney,  Illinois criminal defense lawyerFederal firearm laws are complicated and carry harsh penalties. These laws are not only complex, but they also provide federal prosecutors with an immense arsenal of weapons when prosecuting those accused. This has resulted in a huge increase in prosecutions under the federal laws on firearms. Due to the fact that these prosecutions have become more prevalent, it is essential that everyone understands the law, so they do not find themselves under federal investigation. Below are three of the most common charges prosecutors pursue.

Selling Guns Illegally

There are multiple federal firearm laws pertaining to the sale of firearms, including licensing requirements and restrictions on transporting certain weapons across state lines. Under 18 U.S.C. Section 922(a), it is against the law to sell guns across state lines without a valid license. Selling firearms without any type of license carries a five-year sentence in federal prison for those convicted.


Gun Violence in Chicago

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Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer, Chicago crime statistics,Memorial Day weekend is almost here, and many individuals have made plans to relax and enjoy some time off from work. While the majority of individuals try to make Memorial Day weekend as peaceful as possible, the three-day weekend at the end of May can be cause for concern, especially in major cities where gun violence tends to be more prevalent. When there is not much to do anywhere, the chances of gun violence have greatly increased.

A Look into the Memorial Day Weekend Shootings in Chicago

Last year, in 2017, seven individuals were killed due to gun violence in the city of Chicago. Another 45 individuals were injured because of gun violence. Nearly half of all individuals wounded or killed were shot on Monday, Memorial Day.


Firearms and Felonies: Why They Do Not Mix

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Illinois federal crimes attorney, Illinois criminal attorney, Illinois defense lawyer,If you have a felony conviction, the last thing you want is to find yourself standing in front of a judge again. After serving a punishment, individuals with prior felony convictions find themselves obeying the law down to the speed limit to avoid being separated from their family and friends for any duration again. Unfortunately, others find themselves back in trouble with the law because they were unaware that certain aspects of life might have changed for them due to their record. One change includes the loss of the ability to own firearms. Being found in possession of a firearm with a felony conviction is the most severe of weapons-related charges.

Firearms and Ammunition Are Off Limits

Once you have a felony conviction on your criminal record, you are no longer eligible for the Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card required by the Illinois Department of State Police. DSP reserves the right to deny, revoke, or seize a card at any given time if they find they qualifications are not met. Instances in which disqualification occurs include:

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