Looks like LEO may have there wording wrong, from another forum
Originally Posted by KylaGWolf
Yes if you cover your serial number then you have broken a law.I am going to write to BeeMiller Inc, who made my Hi-Point, explaining the Open Carry movement. I will try to get a letter giving me "specific authorization" to cover the serial number with a piece of electrical tape. This will allow me to be exempt from 537(e).
537e. (a) Any person who knowingly buys, sells, receives, disposes of, conceals, or has in his or her possession any personal property from which the manufacturer's serial number, identification number, electronic serial number, or any other distinguishing number or identification mark has been removed, defaced, covered, altered, or destroyed, is guilty of a public offense, punishable as follows:
(1) If the value of the property does not exceed four hundred dollars ($400), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding six months.
(2) If the value of the property exceeds four hundred dollars ($400), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year.
(3) If the property is an integrated computer chip or panel of a value of four hundred dollars ($400) or more, by imprisonment in the state prison for 16 months, or 2 or 3 years or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year.
For purposes of this subdivision, "personal property" includes, but is not limited to, the following:
(1) Any television, radio, recorder, phonograph, telephone, piano, or any other musical instrument or sound equipment.
(2) Any washing machine, sewing machine, vacuum cleaner, or other household appliance or furnishings.
(3) Any typewriter, adding machine, dictaphone, or any other office equipment or furnishings.
(4) Any computer, printed circuit, integrated chip or panel, or other part of a computer.
(5) Any tool or similar device, including any technical or scientific equipment.
(6) Any bicycle, exercise equipment, or any other entertainment or recreational equipment.
(7) Any electrical or mechanical equipment, contrivance, material, or piece of apparatus or equipment.
(8) Any clock, watch, watch case, or watch movement.
(9) Any vehicle or vessel, or any component part thereof.
(b) When property described in subdivision (a) comes into the custody of a peace officer it shall become subject to the provision of Chapter 12 (commencing with Section 1407) of Title 10 of Part 2, relating to the disposal of stolen or embezzled property. Property subject to this section shall be considered stolen or embezzled property for the purposes of that chapter, and prior to being disposed of, shall have an identification mark imbedded or engraved in, or permanently affixed to it.
(c) This section does not apply to those cases or instances where any of the changes or alterations enumerated in subdivision (a) have been customarily made or done as an established practice in the ordinary and regular conduct of business, by the original manufacturer, or by his or her duly appointed direct representative, or under specific authorization from the original manufacturer.
The memo is also WRONG when it says "PC 12090 Tampering with marks on firearms. It is illegal to possess a firearm in which the serial number has been altered, COVERED, or obliterated. (FEL)
Nowhere is 12090 do you see the term "covered". You do see the following terms used:
The one thing all these terms have in common is that they are all permanent attempts to keep the firearm from being identified.
Taping Over the serial number does not change the number.
Taping Over the serial number does not alter the number.
Taping Over the serial number does not remove the number.
Taping Over the serial number does not obliterate the number.
12090. Any person who changes, alters, removes or obliterates the name of the maker, model, manufacturer's number, or other mark of identification, including any distinguishing number or mark assigned by the Department of Justice on any pistol, revolver, or any other firearm, without first having secured written permission from the department to make such change, alteration or removal shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison.