SCOTUS to review Straw Purchases

The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case of Abramski v. United States. The meat of the case is that Abramski, a former police officer legally purchased a Glock handgun, which he then sold to his uncle, a resident of PA. Both transactions were conducted through FFLs, and both parties were legally entitled to own guns.

SCOTUS could clarify and review two important areas in this case; the first being what clearly defines a straw purchase, and the second could also be what defines “engaged in the business” of selling firearms. Right now, the only clear definition of a straw purchase comes from the 4473 form itself, which states:

For the purposes of this form, you are the actual transferee/buyer if you are purchasing the firearm for yourself (e.g., redeeming the firearm from pawn/retrieving it from consignment, firearm raffle winner). You are also the actual transferree/buyer if you are legitimately purchasing the firearm as a gift for a third party.

That actually leaves a lot of room for interpretation, unfortunately. In the case of Abramski, there is some interesting back story as well. Abramski was originally arrested for bank robbery, which the authorities were unable to get sufficient evidence to prosecute for; the records relating to the transfers were found during searches of his house. Apparently the .gov decided to go after him for the straw purchase after failing to prosecute for the alleged bank robbery.

Gun Nuts will continue to follow this case, because rulings on the definition of a straw purchase will have an immediate affect on gun owners across the nation. There is a lot of gray area in the law that could be impacted by this ruling.