A Las Vegas police officer was indicted last week for an illegal transfer of a firearm. The police officer is accused of giving a .22 caliber handgun to a two-time ex-felon. The ex-felon, in turn, sold that firearm and a .357 handgun to an undercover police officer for $500.00. NRS 202.362 applies to these types of firearm offenses and provides:
"Except as otherwise provided in subsection 3, a person within this State shall not sell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to another person if he or she has actual knowledge that the other person:
(a) Is under indictment for, or has been convicted of, a felony in this or any other state, or in any political subdivision thereof, or of a felony in violation of the laws of the United States of America, unless the other person has received a pardon and the pardon does not restrict his or her right to bear arms;
(b) Is a fugitive from justice;
(c) Has been adjudicated as mentally ill or has been committed to any mental health facility; or
(d) Is illegally or unlawfully in the United States."
A person who transfers a firearm to a prohibited person in violation of NRS 202.362 faces up to ten (10) years in prison and a $10,000.00 fine.
The ex-felon who received the firearm is a cooperating witness against a prominent local attorney who is under investigation for HOA fraud, and who police claim planned to kill herself so that her family could collect life insurance proceeds.
No announcement has been made regarding whether the ex-felon in this case will be charged as a prohibited person in possession of a firearm. NRS 202.360 applies to ex-felons and other prohibited persons who possess firearms and states:
"A person shall not own or have in his or her possession or under his or her custody or control any firearm if the person:
(a) Has been convicted of a felony in this or any other state, or in any political subdivision thereof, or of a felony in violation of the laws of the United States of America, unless the person has received a pardon and the pardon does not restrict his or her right to bear arms;
(b) Is a fugitive from justice; or
(c) Is an unlawful user of, or addicted to, any controlled substance."
Ex-felons in possession of firearms may be prosecuted in both State and Federal Courts. In State Courts, Ex-Felon in Possession of a Firearm is punishable by up to four (4) years in state prison. In Federal Courts, an offender can face up to ten (10) years in federal prison. Greater penalties can apply if the offender is considered a Habitual Criminal (state law) or an Armed Career Criminal (federal law).
The indicted police officer was previously involved in the July 2010 shooting of Army veteran Erik Scott outside a Summerlin Costco.
If you or someone you know has been charged with a firearm offense, contact a Las Vegas Criminal Defense Attorney right away. A Las Vegas Criminal Defense Lawyer can analyze the facts of your case, develop appropriate defenses and provide you with an aggressive defense to protect your legal rights.