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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A friend called me today and told me of a rifle a friend of his was selling... (Clue #1... A "friend of a friend" thing) The price was a good bit lower than going rate for this make/model of firearm. The story is, this guy is "hard up for cash" and needs to get this gun sold in a hurry to pay bills... (Clue #2... In a rush to sell). I went to check out this rifle (These two work out of the same business) and found it to be (as far as I could tell) NEW and unfired. Still in it's original shipping box. What struck me as strange was all the packing labels were either ripped off or cut out of the box. (Hmmmm.....) My friend was the one who showed me the rifle as his friend was still at work... (Hmmmm again....) All the accessories were in the case, but no other paperwork was found. Right now, I'm waiting for the owner to call me and I'll be asking to see his sales slip...

I've met the owner of this rifle once, some time ago, and remember him as sort of a shady looking character... I'm kind of shady looking myself so I really can't really fault him for that. My friend, the one who originally called to tell me about this gun, is an honest guy and I don't think HE would be into anything that's not on the "straight and narrow". This other guy, the rifle's owner.... I'm not so sure about. Again... just a "feeling"...

This seems like one of those deals that's too good to be true and maybe I should just run for the hills. However, if it IS legit, I'd love to pick up this rifle at a considerable discount!! And help him out financially (IF that story is true...) I even have his friend's blessing to take this guy "to the cleaners" as far as price!

Question... Is there any way to find out if this rifle is legit and not, well.... stolen? Would my local Sheriff be able to help? Or should I go directly to the BATFE?

(Note: If this rifle does turn out to be on the "hot" side, you can bet your life I'll be helping LEO make an arrest if needed...)
 

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Just get the serial number and the make and model, go to your local sheriffs office or police dept. Im sure they will gladly run the number to make sure it isnt stolen. I can speak for where you like, but in the state of GA, Theft by receiving stolen property states that you obtain property that you know or should have known was stolen. It sounds like you think its stolen so if you buy it without checking it out, you would be guilty of a crime in the state of GA. And btw, any theft crime in the State of GA involving a firearm is an automatic felony regardless of the value of the firearm.
 

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moose-hunter said:
A friend called me today and told me of a rifle a friend of his was selling... (Clue #1... A "friend of a friend" thing) The price was a good bit lower than going rate for this make/model of firearm. The story is, this guy is "hard up for cash" and needs to get this gun sold in a hurry to pay bills... (Clue #2... In a rush to sell). I went to check out this rifle (These two work out of the same business) and found it to be (as far as I could tell) NEW and unfired. Still in it's original shipping box. What struck me as strange was all the packing labels were either ripped off or cut out of the box. (Hmmmm.....) My friend was the one who showed me the rifle as his friend was still at work... (Hmmmm again....) All the accessories were in the case, but no other paperwork was found. Right now, I'm waiting for the owner to call me and I'll be asking to see his sales slip...

I've met the owner of this rifle once, some time ago, and remember him as sort of a shady looking character... I'm kind of shady looking myself so I really can't really fault him for that. My friend, the one who originally called to tell me about this gun, is an honest guy and I don't think HE would be into anything that's not on the "straight and narrow". This other guy, the rifle's owner.... I'm not so sure about. Again... just a "feeling"...

This seems like one of those deals that's too good to be true and maybe I should just run for the hills. However, if it IS legit, I'd love to pick up this rifle at a considerable discount!! And help him out financially (IF that story is true...) I even have his friend's blessing to take this guy "to the cleaners" as far as price!

Question... Is there any way to find out if this rifle is legit and not, well.... stolen? Would my local Sheriff be able to help? Or should I go directly to the BATFE?

(Note: If this rifle does turn out to be on the "hot" side, you can bet your life I'll be helping LEO make an arrest if needed...)
Get the serial # off of the rifle and call the ATF to trace it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
ron169 said:
Just get the serial number and the make and model, go to your local sheriffs office or police dept. Im sure they will gladly run the number to make sure it isnt stolen. I can speak for where you like, but in the state of GA, Theft by receiving stolen property states that you obtain property that you know or should have known was stolen. It sounds like you think its stolen so if you buy it without checking it out, you would be guilty of a crime in the state of GA. And btw, any theft crime in the State of GA involving a firearm is an automatic felony regardless of the value of the firearm.
EXACTLY why I need to check this out before the transaction. I'm not sure if in fact it is stolen. But from what I remember of this guy, I can't discount that possibility...
 

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As already stated, get the serial # and check wioth the PD, ATF, or even try calling the manufacturer to see if they can help you.
 

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I have already run into a similar situation as you describe.

A dealer was selling Ruger 10/22 Laminated Mannlicher rifles at a show where all the price tags had been cut out of the boxes or marked over with black marker.

Turned out that he had bought a quantity of these guns from local WalMart stores when they were putting discontinued rifles on clearance.

The seller simply did not want a potential buyer to know how little he had paid for these guns.

Kerry
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just moments ago, I received a call from the seller. He does not have the original sales slip but gave me a serial number. I'm heading into town tomorrow and will stop by the Sheriff's office and see what happens... OR I may just call the "local" BATFE branch office...

Thanks for the help folks!!!
 

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If you asked me to run the number, and it came back stolen, I'd be asking you to help me meet this guy, with the gun, because I'm really interested in it.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Magnumwideglide said:
If you asked me to run the number, and it came back stolen, I'd be asking you to help me meet this guy, with the gun, because I'm really interested in it.....
If the deputy I'll be talking to would like to come with to help me "pick up" the gun... He and his friends at the department are certainly invited!! :wink: Heaven forbid I should have all the "fun"... :lol:
 

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Ok so someone explain something to me:

At least in Texas, when you buy a gun, the ATF never gets the serial number of the gun you buy. That stays on the paperwork you fill out and is kept with the FFL. The phone call to the ATF just makes sure you can legally own/buy a firearm.

So if the firearm is not stolen and has not been reported to the ATF in anyway, there's no way a phone call to the ATF will help. In fact, this would hold true with any of the law enforcement agencies.

Technically, you could call the manufacturer who could trace it to the distributor, who could then trace it to an FFL; who then MAYBE could trace it to a person. But, I find that doubtful that a FFL would spend time combing through thousands of forms for anyone short of the ATF.

FFL's are supposed to only keep the forms for 4 or 5 years IIRC and then destroy them.

Have I misunderstood something? This is why I've always found people covering up serial numbers somewhat perplexing.
 

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I guess the reason they suggested calling up the ATF is for them to run the serial number through NCIC to see if it has been reported stolen, which is the same that the local LEA would do. The funny thing about the majority of stolen weapon reports that I take, very few of the owners ever have the Serial Number written down. Seems the only ones who ever do keep their weapons so secure as to prevent a simple snatch and grab. Ive bought a few guns from personal sellers and always call my dept. and get them to run the number first!

Remember CYA.... Cover You Arse!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Howdy All...

I just got back from town and talking to the Deputy about the firearm in question... I left the serial number with him and before I rolled up the drive way, he called back to say the gun was "legit" and that I could go and pick it up!!! He said "he tried all the places he know where to look for stolen guns" and nothing came back stinky. He did add that it would probably be best if I were to hold on tot he gun for 30 days of so, just in case it has not made any "lists" yet... So the jury is still out, but confidence is VERY high!!! For this price... And with the laws "blessing"... I'll take the now very calculated "risk"!!

Thanks for the help!! I'm off to pick up my latest "toy"... :mrgreen: And if you're wondering... No, it's nothing chambered in 6.8SPC... :(
















YET!!! :wink:
 

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Thellurider, They cover up the serial number because once a gun is entered stolen, it stays that way. A few years back I got a 1911 style .45 back to a Navy guy. It was stolen in 1976. The geniuses that destroy the serial numbers don't understand that it's illegal to have a gun with an obliterated serial number.
 

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Magnumwideglide said:
Thellurider, They cover up the serial number because once a gun is entered stolen, it stays that way. A few years back I got a 1911 style .45 back to a Navy guy. It was stolen in 1976. The geniuses that destroy the serial numbers don't understand that it's illegal to have a gun with an obliterated serial number.

I just reread your post, I'm talking about when people obscure their serial numbers when they post pictures on the internet not when they scratch of the physical serial number itself.


So someone is going to see my serial number on the web, call up the ATF and report it stolen? They don't know my name, where I am or anything?

Seems somewhat weak minded.
 

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Most departments will not "run" a serial number just because a citizen asks. In most cases it cannot be run unless as part of a criminal investigation. (At least that's how I remember it.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
amram said:
Most departments will not "run" a serial number just because a citizen asks. In most cases it cannot be run unless as part of a criminal investigation. (At least that's how I remember it.)
Although this rifle was not "directly" involved in any investigations, there had been a "break in" at a somewhat local gun shop that peeked the deputy's, curiosity... As it turned out, the firearms that were reported stolen from this burglary were all handguns. No long arms were missing...
 

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ron169 said:
I cant speak for other states, but in GA, u can run a serial number just as easily as you can a vehicle registration or drivers license. )ou cant run any for no reason, but the only thing we need a case/ investigation number for is a criminal background check
Same in MN - No case needed to run stolen checks on property.

If a citizen asked me to run one like that all I have to do is get on the radio (we don't have MDC or MDT in the sticks yet) and ask the dispatcher to run it.

I'd certainly have no problem doing it for someone in those circumstances. Rather find out it's hot before the guy throws away his $$ and possibly recover a firearm.
 
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