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Tully, Swain Bill to Fight Straw Purchases and Gun Trafficking Now Law

Joining in the ongoing legislative effort to combat gun trafficking and straw purchasing in the state, Assembly Democrats Chris Tully and Lisa Swain (Both D-Bergen, Passaic) are sponsors of legislation that would prohibit a person who is disqualified from possessing a firearm from knowingly soliciting, persuading, encouraging, or enticing anyone to sell, give, transfer, or assign a firearm against current state and federal laws.

The legislation (A-4449) was signed into law by Governor Murphy on Tuesday. The sponsors issued the following joint statement:

“Guns move far too easily between states through gun trafficking and unlawful straw purchases. No one should purchase a firearm to sell to an individual who is unqualified for a gun license.

“Gun violence in our communities has claimed too many lives. Stronger regulations on straw purchasing in New Jersey can help keep firearms out of the wrong hands. This law, along with the other gun violence prevention measures signed by the Governor today, will work together to end this practice.”

Under the new law, the disqualified person would be guilty of a crime of the third degree, which is punishable by a three-to-five year term of incarceration, a fine of up to $15,000, or both.

The bill signing ceremony was held at Livingston High School in Berkeley Heights.

“The scourge of gun violence is a pervasive problem that affects our entire nation,” said Governor Murphy. “I am proud to work with our legislators to implement some of the toughest gun laws in the country to protect our residents and make our communities safer for all. We see the results of our work by having among the lowest rates of gun-related deaths nationwide. With every step, New Jersey is proving that commonsense gun safety laws work.”