Hundreds In Massachusetts May Lose Gun Licenses In State-Federal Clash

Jun 15, 2018

Massachusetts authorities say hundreds of residents previously cleared by a state board to own a firearm may lose their gun licenses because of a clash between state and federal regulations. 

The Boston Globe reports that the state began notifying police chiefs last month after federal law enforcement officials said the state's Firearms License Review Board, which considers whether people with misdemeanor criminal convictions should have a license, was clearing applicants who should have been disqualified under federal rules.

That group of 340 people includes police officers who without a license could be in danger of losing their jobs.

The number of people in danger of losing their gun licenses is likely to grow.

From the Globe report:

The new legal interpretation could also affect an undetermined number of others who, under a separate state statute, were allowed to get a gun license five years after they were convicted or completed probation for certain types of misdemeanors. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives told the state that this practice also runs counter to federal law, and that those gun owners also shouldn’t be licensed.

Jim Wallace, executive director of the Gun Owners' Action League of Massachusetts, called it a "difficult scenario."