Air Marshal Director Stepping Down Amid Agency Gun Scheme Probe

The director of the Federal Air Marshal Service is retiring after being investigated for his role in an alleged operation to acquire guns for officials’ personal use, has learned.

Director Robert Bray’s home was raided in December in connection with the ongoing probe. Law enforcement and congressional sources told that Bray’s recently announced retirement, which is effective in June, is directly related to the investigation.

Bray allegedly is among several officials who were obtaining weapons through this operation.

The Department of Homeland Security inspector general probe — which also is believed to involve the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — stems from whistleblower accusations involving federal Air Marshal supervisor Danny Poulos.

He is accused of using the agency’s federal firearms license and his relationship with gun manufacturer Sig Sauer to obtain discounted and free guns. He then provided them to high-up agency officials for their personal use, according to whistleblower documents obtained by and interviews with multiple officials with knowledge of the ongoing probe.

It is unclear, based on the allegations, whether he made money off the alleged transactions, and how many guns were involved.

Read the rest of the article:

Sig Sauer Sues ATF For Calling Its ‘Muzzle Brake’ A Gun Silencer

Gun maker Sig Sauer has filed a civil suit against the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives claiming the federal agency wrongfully classified a “muzzle brake” Sig designed to reduce recoil, as an item “intended only for use” when making a silencer.

Sig claims that gun silencers are “subject to burdensome legal requirements” and by calling its muzzle brake a part for a silencer, the federal agency is subjecting it to “economic injury.”

“If classified as a silencer, no market exists for the subject device given that it will not silence, muffle, or diminish the report of a firearm and yet it would still be subject to the burdensome requirements set forth above as if it really is a silencer,” Sig argues through Manchester attorney Mark Rouvalis and Virginia attorney Stephen Halbrook.

ATF Director B. Todd Jones is named as defendant in Sig’s lawsuit and has 21 days, after being served, to respond to the civil action, dated April 7.

Sig claims it designed the muzzle brake which “effectively reduces recoil and muzzle rise when a shot is discharged” and as such, it’s not subject to regulation under the federal Gun Control Act.

“Accordingly, it will be highly marketable to consumers and will generate profit,” according to the suit.

If classified as a silencer or muffler, “no market would exist for the device,” because consumers would not subject themselves to the “required burdens” associated with silencers, to buy a device that doesn’t perform as a silencer, Sig claims.

Silencers are subject to specific marking, record keeping and transfer restrictions, according to Sig.

The Newington gun maker’s suit, filed in the U. S. District Court of New Hampshire, states that it submitted a rifle, with its muzzle brake, to the ATF on April 4, 2013 for evaluation. The device is described as 9.5 inches long and permanently attached with a weld to a 6.5 inch barrel, making the overall barrel length 16 inches.

The ATF responded, by letter dated Aug. 26, 2013, that the device is constructed as a silencer component commonly referred to as a “monolithic baffle stack,” the suit states.
“Welding it to a barrel does not change its design characteristics or function,” Sig says it was informed by the ATF.

In a Sept. 6, 2013 followup letter, Sig asked the federal regulatory agency for reconsideration, while reporting that sound meter testing proved the device amplified, not muffled sound, when a gun with it was fired. It also included evidence showing the device offsets and corrects recoil of a firearm when attached, Sig claims.

By letter dated Feb. 21, the ATF stuck to its original finding, stating that Sig’s device is a part intended only for use in making a silencer. In its subsequent lawsuit, Sig tells the federal court the ATF did not dispute its evidence showing otherwise.

Due to the ATF’s “erroneous” classification of the device as a silencer, Sig has and will continue to suffer economic consequences, it tells the court. The ATF failed to “articulate a satisfactory explanation for its classification and “failed to examine the relevant data,” the suit claims.

The federal agency also failed to address Sig’s contention that there are similar devices on the market that are being transferred without being treated as firearms, Sig claims.

Sig asks the court to set aside ATF’s determination as unlawful, to declare that its muzzle brake is not a part only intended for use in silencers, and to award it costs and damages.


9 Tips for Choosing Your Holster

Whether you are on duty or off, the kind of holster that you hold your gun in can both influence the way that you carry it and the places that you get to carry it to. Notwithstanding the kind of gun you have or where you choose to strap it to your person, there are two basic qualities that you need to look for in a holster. To begin, you holster needs to be capable of holding your pistol securely; then, it needs to allow quick and easy access to your weapon when you need it.
Stores selling tactical police equipment offer a wide range of holsters, many of them innovative designs by manufacturers trying to set themselves apart. Some of these new designs offer nothing but gimmickry. To pick the right holster, you need to be able to tell genuine innovations apart from meaningless ones. New designs aren’t really necessary, though. Holsters have been around long enough now that the basic principles of successful holster working design are established. Rather than run after every new design that holster makers come up with when you shop for a holster, you need to go for designs that deliver well on the basics.
Balance price against quality
Excellent holster designs made with quality materials aren’t necessarily expensive. A basic design by a quality brand should give you all the functionality that you need. Basic design, though, doesn’t equate to cheapness of quality. Many bottom-of-the-barrel designs have snaps that open with too little force, have rough edges that chafe the skin and don’t hold up well to exposure to moisture. The leather may swell in humid weather and may grow tight around the gun. Quality basic designs, on the other hand, have properly treated leather.
Look at the number of safety features used
Good holster designs use special retention designs to help make sure that the guns they hold never fall out by accident no matter what kind of rough and tumble they may be subjected to. Retention mechanisms also help make sure that no one is able to make a grab for the gun in the holster. Multiple retention mechanisms, though, have the effect of slowing down the speed with which a weapon is accessed. There needs to be some sort of balance between the kind of retention mechanism provided and the degree to which it slows down the draw.
In most cases, single retention mechanism designs are all that are needed. Any more than that could make it difficult for the owner of the gun to reach for his weapon in an emergency.
Look for active retention mechanisms
A button-down cover for your gun is an example of a passive retention mechanism – you need to engage it for it to work. An active mechanism requires nothing more than for you to push the gun down into the holster. Various spring-loaded devices hold on to your gun automatically. Passive mechanisms waste time and often require two hands for their operation – these aren’t a good idea. Active mechanisms are much better.
Don’t buy fanny packs or concealed-carry bags
Gun holders that are built into a handbag aren’t a good idea. In the event of a snatch-and-grab theft attempt, the handbag is the first target. Fanny pack holsters are bad idea, too – they invite the attention of thieves.
Do not buy a holster built into a tactical garment
Tactical garments – heavy-duty vests that have built-in holsters and weapons pockets – do offer great convenience when you need to carry weapons. They advertise the fact that you are armed and trained, though. Any mischief-maker is likely to take out a person dressed in this manner first.
Pocket holsters are a good idea
If you plan to carry your gun in your pocket, it isn’t good idea to simply drop the gun in your pocket. Not only does drawing not work well when your gun is in a flimsy fabric pocket, lint can jam gun mechanisms, too. If you plan to carry a gun in your pocket, you need a pocket holster.
A hip holster can offer excellent security
A hip holster places your gun in the hollow of your waist. Your elbow protects the gun from anyone interested in making a grab for it, too.  Hip holsters offer great access to the wearer, too.
Synthetic materials can be excellent
While leather has always been the traditional material of choice for holsters, modern synthetic materials – plastics and carbon fiber, for instance – can offer excellent quality at low prices. Synthetic materials have the excellent advantage that the make reupholstering easy. Leather holsters, on the other hand, usually collapse when the gun is drawn. Re-holstering can take some time.
Finally, you need the right holster for every application
In general, you can’t have too many holsters – you need a different one for every purpose – hunting, competition, concealed carrying and so on. You can become much more efficient at the activity that you’re involved in when you have the right holster for the job.

Jeremy S has owned a gun for many years now. In his spare time, he likes to blog about guns and gun safety on various websites.

Test, Examination And Classification Of 7N6 5.45X39 Ammunition

On March 5, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) received a request from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency (CBP) to conduct a test, examination and classification of Russian-made 7N6 5.45×39 ammunition for purposes of determining whether it is considered “armor piercing ammunition” as defined by the Gun Control Act (GCA), as amended. Since 1986, the GCA has prohibited the importation of armor piercing ammunition unless it is destined for government use or testing. The imported ammunition about which CBP was inquiring was not destined for either excepted purpose.

The Gun Control Act of 1968 (GCA), as amended, defines the term “armor piercing ammunition” as:

“(i) a projectile or projectile core which may be used in a handgun and which is constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper, or depleted uranium; or

(ii) a full jacketed projectile larger than .22 caliber designed and intended for use in a handgun and whose jacket has a weight of more than 25 percent of the total weight of the projectile.” (emphasis added)

When ATF tested the 7N6 samples provided by CBP, they were found to contain a steel core. ATF’s analysis also concluded that the ammunition could be used in a commercially available handgun, the Fabryka Bronie Radom, Model Onyks 89S, 5.45×39 caliber semi-automatic pistol, which was approved for importation into the United States in November 2011. Accordingly, the ammunition is “armor piercing” under the section 921(a)(17)(B)(i) and is therefore not importable. ATF’s determination applies only to the Russian-made 7N6 ammunition analyzed, not to all 5.45×39 ammunition. Ammunition of that caliber using projectiles without a steel core would have to be independently examined to determine their importability.