By Sam Rolley / Personal Liberty Digest
In an effort to show just how easy it is for criminals to buy firearms online, federal agents spent two years posing as criminals trying to score guns on popular shooting sport websites and forums. It turns out, it isn’t so easy after all.
According to a Government Accountability Office report detailing the operation, federal agents tried a total of 72 times to facilitate illegal gun sales via the internet between 2015 and 2017 .
They weren’t, however, able to complete a single sale.
From the report:
Tests performed on the Surface Web demonstrated that private sellers GAO contacted on gun forums and other classified ads were unwilling to sell a firearm to an individual who appeared to be prohibited from possessing a firearm. Of the 72 attempts agents made to purchase firearms on the Surface Web, 56 sellers refused to complete a transaction: 29 sellers stated they would not ship a firearm and 27 refused after the disclosure of the undercover identities’ stated prohibited status. Furthermore, in 5 of these 72 attempts, the accounts GAO set up were frozen by the websites, which prevented the agents from using the forums and attempting to make a purchase.
Most of the sellers targeted by the federal agents were individuals not selling under an FFL license. Those private party transactions are considered by anti-2nd Amendment groups as the most likely to result in dangerous firearms falling into the wrong hands.
According to the GAO, agents were able to complete two firearm purchases on the deep web. But they didn’t complete a single purchase via the regular internet.
In each of the attempts on the normal internet, agents indicated to sellers they were one of the following during the purchase attempt:
- a felon avoiding a background check,
- an individual with a domestic-violence background or a restraining
order against him or her,
- an individual who unlawfully uses controlled substances (or is an
- an individual who was dishonorably discharged from the military, and
- an individual who has renounced his or her citizenship or is otherwise
an unlawful alien.
The full report:
After covering news and politics for traditional media outlets, Sam Rolley took a position at Personal Liberty Media Group where he focuses on his true passions: national politics and liberty issues. In his daily columns and reports, Rolley works to help readers recognize lies perpetuated by the mainstream media and develop a better understanding of issues ignored by more conventional outlets. Follow him on Twitter @SamRolley
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