According to California Penal Code 26500 (PC-26500), it is illegal to sell, lease or transfer a firearm without a valid license.
When is a Defendant Guilty of California Penal Code 26500?
The prosecutor must prove the following element for convicting a defendant under California Penal Code Section 26500:
- Defendant sold, leased, or transferred title to a firearm to another one
- Defendant was aware that he was selling, leasing, or transferring a firearm
- Defendant did not have a valid license to sell, lease, or transfer title to a firearm.
Definition of Firearm Under PC 16520
Definition of firearm under PC 16520 include the following
- It is a device that is designed to be a weapon
- From which a shot, bullet, or projectile can be expended through a barrel
- By the force of a combustion or explosion
These devices include revolvers pistols, shotguns, handguns, rocket launchers, Tasers and flare guns. However, pellet guns, BB guns and unloaded “antique” firearms do not count as firearms for purposes of Penal Code 26500.
People who are prohibited from possessing or acquiring a firearm:
- Persons convicted of a felony
- Persons convicted of some misdemeanor offenses
- Persons addicted to drugs
- Persons suffering from mental illness
- Persons with at least two convictions under California PC 417 Brandishing a weapon
- Persons under age of 18
In case a person is prohibited from owning a gun, he is also prohibited from owning ammunition. Person who has a right to own a firearm must also possess a valid firearm safety certificate.
People who are exempt from prosecution under PC Section 26500:
- Persons acting pursuant to operation of law or a court order
- Law enforcement officers
- Military agencies
- Persons who sell or transfer firearms to federally licensed dealers
- Persons engaged in the infrequent transfer of personal firearms at guns shows
- Persons who get rid of inherited firearms
- Shooting ranges that temporarily loan firearms
- Persons who provide unloaded prop firearms for use in plays or movies
- Person who provide a firearm to a gunsmith for repairs.
Requirement for obtaining a firearm license
Requirement for obtaining a California firearm license are as follows:
- Valid firearms license
- Business license required by local municipality
- Seller’s permit issued by the State Board of Equalization
- Certificate of Eligibility issued by the Department of Justice
- One-year license issued by local authorizing agency
One-year license is on a form prescribed by the state Attorney General’s Office. It must clearly state “Valid for Retail Sales of Firearms” and include an endorsement by the local authorizing agency.
These rules apply to generic firearms and not specific types of weapons such as grenades, destructive devices, machine guns, short-barreled rifles or shotguns and “dangerous weapons” or assault weapons, for which a specific license is required.
Failure to Maintain the Firearm License in California
Failure to maintain the license can subject a person to revocation of his license. In case person sells, leases or transfers a firearm without a valid permission he will face prosecution for violating California PC Section 26500.
Penalties for California Penal Code 26500 Violation
In California the unlicensed sale of a firearm is a misdemeanor with the following penalties:
- Up to six months in a county jail
- A fine up to $1,000.
The punishment is for each firearm the defendant sells without a valid license.
Glendale Criminal Defense Lawyer
Have you been convicted of a crime related to firearms? If so, it would be a wise idea to face your court case with the assistance of a law firm. If you are located in or around Los Angeles County, a Glendale criminal defense lawyer at KAASS LAW can help you achieve positive results in court.