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Thread: "Found" High Cap Magazines

  1. #1
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    "Found" High Cap Magazines

    Has anyone actually been prosecuted under the high-cap magazine statute for owning high cap magazines? What if you "found" one (ie, parents died, was in their possession, or you accedently picked one up at a shooting range, etc).

    The statute seems pretty clear that high cap magazines are illegal to sell, give, import.. but not possess.

    On another note, if you are just visiting, high cap magazines aren't being imported, correct?

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    Regular Member mjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pace View Post
    Has anyone actually been prosecuted under the high-cap magazine statute for owning high cap magazines? What if you "found" one (ie, parents died, was in their possession, or you accedently picked one up at a shooting range, etc).

    The statute seems pretty clear that high cap magazines are illegal to sell, give, import.. but not possess.

    On another note, if you are just visiting, high cap magazines aren't being imported, correct?
    So long as some form of 'conspiracy' isn't involved finding large-cap mags is legal.

    You are correct that simple posession is not regulated in CA.

    Unfortunately your last statement is incorrect. The simple act of bring a large-cap mag from a state other then CA into California is importation (and illegal unless you qualify for one of the exemptions)

    The most common exemption is that it is legal to re-import large-cap magazines in CA if you posessed them within CA prior to 1/1/00. Residency nor Ownership are an aspect of that exemption.

    For citation: This is all covered in CA Penal Code 12020

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjones View Post
    So long as some form of 'conspiracy' isn't involved finding large-cap mags is legal.

    You are correct that simple posession is not regulated in CA.

    Unfortunately your last statement is incorrect. The simple act of bring a large-cap mag from a state other then CA into California is importation (and illegal unless you qualify for one of the exemptions)

    The most common exemption is that it is legal to re-import large-cap magazines in CA if you posessed them within CA prior to 1/1/00. Residency nor Ownership are an aspect of that exemption.

    For citation: This is all covered in CA Penal Code 12020
    Don't forget the three year statute of limitations.

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    Regular Member mjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pullnshoot25 View Post
    Don't forget the three year statute of limitations.
    True enough - but within the context of an out of state poster it gets a little trickier...

    If an out of stater illegally imported a large-cap mag into CA 1096 Days ago and left the mag within CA, the importer is now 'safe' from prosecution. In other words, the mag can't leave the state and come back as that would be a new crime.

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    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter bigtoe416's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pullnshoot25 View Post
    Don't forget the three year statute of limitations.
    Is there a court case which happens to deal with statute of limitations? I've read elsewhere that the statute of limitations begins not when a crime was committed, but when a crime should have been discovered, or was discovered. If this is the case, assembling a standard capacity magazine in California and then keeping it hidden for three years may not qualify as being protected under the statute of limitations.

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    Just a little nit to pick....Please stop using the term 'high capacity' when describing magazines over 10 rounds. They're 'full capacity.' The others are 'politically limited.' Sorry, a pet peeve of mine.....carry on!
    Lower the crime rate by lowering the criminal survival rate!
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    Regular Member coolusername2007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark-in-texas View Post
    Just a little nit to pick....Please stop using the term 'high capacity' when describing magazines over 10 rounds. They're 'full capacity.' The others are 'politically limited.' Sorry, a pet peeve of mine.....carry on!
    I thought it was "regular capacity" or even "normal capacity" where as ours are "low capacity" or perhaps "infringed capacity". Heh, maybe even "well regulated capacity".

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    i don't personally care either way. they are all high-capacity to some of us who first used revolvers

    Quote Originally Posted by mark-in-texas View Post
    Just a little nit to pick....Please stop using the term 'high capacity' when describing magazines over 10 rounds. They're 'full capacity.' The others are 'politically limited.' Sorry, a pet peeve of mine.....carry on!

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    Visiting = Importing? I'd love to see the definition legally in the code for "import". Most state codes import means for sale or permanent possession in a state/county.

    Quote Originally Posted by mjones View Post
    So long as some form of 'conspiracy' isn't involved finding large-cap mags is legal.

    You are correct that simple posession is not regulated in CA.

    Unfortunately your last statement is incorrect. The simple act of bring a large-cap mag from a state other then CA into California is importation (and illegal unless you qualify for one of the exemptions)

    The most common exemption is that it is legal to re-import large-cap magazines in CA if you posessed them within CA prior to 1/1/00. Residency nor Ownership are an aspect of that exemption.

    For citation: This is all covered in CA Penal Code 12020

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    Regular Member Decoligny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark-in-texas View Post
    Just a little nit to pick....Please stop using the term 'high capacity' when describing magazines over 10 rounds. They're 'full capacity.' The others are 'politically limited.' Sorry, a pet peeve of mine.....carry on!
    Actually, the correct legal terminology is "Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device" which is defined specifically as being able to accept more than 10 rounds of ammunition.

    When dealing the the law, precise terminology is best.

    Is there a legal definition to "Full Capacity"? How many rounds does a "Full Capacity" magazine take? In my wife's Baretta, the "Full Capacity" magazine is 7 rounds. In my Hi-Point 9mm the "Full Capacity" magazine is 8 rounds. If an aftermarket company makes a 100 round drum magazine for a gun, is that a "Full Capacity" magazine, or is that an "Extended Capacity" magazine?

    In California the term "Large Capacity" has a clearly defined meaning when dealing with magazines.
    Any other terminology is simply an exercise in self-gratification.
    Last edited by Decoligny; 01-13-2011 at 11:38 AM.

  11. #11
    Regular Member mjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pace View Post
    Visiting = Importing? I'd love to see the definition legally in the code for "import". Most state codes import means for sale or permanent possession in a state/county.
    The CA penal code regularly makes a distinction between 'simple importing' and importing for a specific purpose suchas 'import for commercial sale'

    For example, a common exemption to importing a mag is:
    (23) The importation of a large-capacity magazine by a person who
    lawfully possessed the large-capacity magazine in the state prior to
    January 1, 2000, lawfully took it out of the state, and is returning
    to the state with the large-capacity magazine previously lawfully
    possessed in the state.

    vs
    12020.1. Any person in this state who possesses, commercially
    manufactures or causes to be commercially manufactured, or who
    knowingly imports into the state for commercial sale

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    Regular Member mjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigtoe416 View Post
    Is there a court case which happens to deal with statute of limitations? I've read elsewhere that the statute of limitations begins not when a crime was committed, but when a crime should have been discovered, or was discovered. If this is the case, assembling a standard capacity magazine in California and then keeping it hidden for three years may not qualify as being protected under the statute of limitations.
    PC 12020. (a) Any person in this state who does any of the following
    is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year
    or in the state prison:

    PC 801. Except as provided in Sections 799 and 800, prosecution for an
    offense punishable by imprisonment in the state prison shall be
    commenced within three years after commission of the offense.

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    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter bigtoe416's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjones View Post
    PC 12020. (a) Any person in this state who does any of the following
    is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year
    or in the state prison:

    PC 801. Except as provided in Sections 799 and 800, prosecution for an
    offense punishable by imprisonment in the state prison shall be
    commenced within three years after commission of the offense.
    You're probably right. What I was referencing is called the "discovery rule," and I can't find an instance of it in criminal cases. Maybe it's just a civil thing.

  14. #14
    Regular Member mjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigtoe416 View Post
    You're probably right. What I was referencing is called the "discovery rule," and I can't find an instance of it in criminal cases. Maybe it's just a civil thing.
    Discovery as a trigger is in PC 803, 803.5 - no firearms related offenses are included.

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