Schneiderman Charges 10 With Illegal Gun Sales


Ten people across the state have been charged with selling firearms at gun shows without performing a background check on buyers, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced today.

Gun sellers from Erie, Genesee, Orleans and Ulster county were among those nabbed in the sting operation. The attorney general’s office said undercover agents purchased firearms – including three assault rifles — at six gun shows statewide earlier this year.

The sellers were each charged with a class A misdemeanor of “failure to conduct a background check at a gun show.”

Schneiderman’s office also announced it would send subpoenas to gun-show operators compelling them to testify. They are also sending cease-and-desist letters to the gun shows where violations were uncovered to immediately stop the unlawful sales.

“The illegal sale of guns at gun shows endangers the public by giving felons, terrorists and the dangerously mentally ill an open and anonymous marketplace to buy guns without a background check,” Schneiderman said in a statement.

Among the 10 people charged were Dan Kowalczewski of Cheektowaga, Erie County; Christopher Sterling of Alden, Erie County; William Smith of Corfu, Genesee County; Peter Tric of Kingston, Ulster County; and Daniel Heinsler of Waterport, Orleans County.


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  1. What these articles fail to mention is if those who are being charged were actual DEALERS, (those who possess a Federal Firearms License, or FFL). When an FFL dealer sells a gun, he MUST do a NICS check. If they were FFL dealers, not only should they be charged at a state level, but should face suspension of their FFL as well as Federal charges. It is my feeling that these cases most likely involved private parties selling guns in a face to face manner while at a gun show. In NY, it is required to do a background check for such, if I am not mistaken. While such illegal sales are indeed a problem, it is a bit unfair to present such an article without ALL of the facts. Doing so tends to tar many with the same brush, which, of course is the actual intent anyways. Of course, presenting ALL of the facts does tend to reduce the sensationalism and reduce the intended effect and the typical “end justifies the means” mentality of the main stream media as well as those who would disarm lawfull gun owners.