The Florida and federal governments closely regulate who can own and possess a firearm. Though the theory behind these laws is that they will keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of those who are more likely to cause harm and commit crimes, the fact of the matter is that many harmless individuals end up being accused of a criminal offense. As a result, these accused individuals face the very real possibility of significant penalties that could severely damage their lives.
One of these federal firearms offenses occurs when there is a felon in possession of a firearm. Federal law prohibits many individuals from possessing or receiving a gun or ammunition, if they fit into certain categories. Amongst these categories are felons, drug addicts, aliens, those subject to a restraining order, those who have been convicted of domestic assault, fugitives and those who have been discharged dishonorably from any branch of the military. In order for the offense to fall under federal jurisdiction, the gun or ammunition must have been moved across a state line.
This offense is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Those who have been convicted of three or more violent felonies may be subjected a 15 year minimum sentence. This means that an individual who merely has bullets in his or her home could be subject to a decade or more in prison simply because of his or her history. This is harsh, and California attorneys stand ready to help try to protect these individuals from such damaging penalties.
Though an attorney cannot guarantee an outcome, an experienced lawyer may be able to help accused individuals better understand their legal rights when it comes to facing a federal gun crime. This way, the accused can make decisions that represent his or her best interests, and hopefully give him or her a chance to beat the accusations.
Source: Justice.gov, "Quick Reference to Federal Firearms Laws," accessed on March 21, 2015