Assembly Panel Advances Tougher Penalties For Gun Trafficking

TRENTON – The Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee today advanced a Democrat-sponsored legislative package  to enhance penalties for gun trafficking in New Jersey.

The first bill (A-3853), sponsored by Assemblyman Troy Singleton, Speaker Sheila Oliver, Assemblyman Tim Eustace, Assemblywoman Grace Spencer and Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter, clarifies that any motor vehicle used by a person to transport, ship or bring any firearm into the state for the purpose of unlawfully selling, transferring or giving that firearm to another is subject to seizure and forfeiture. The second bill (A-3854), sponsored by Singleton, Oliver, Eustace, Sumter, Spencer and Assemblywoman Marlene Caride, enhances the penalty for firearms trafficking in the state by making that crime subject to the No Early Release Act. Under the No Early Release Act, a violator must serve 85 percent of the term of incarceration imposed by the court before becoming eligible for parole.

“Many of the weapons used in gun crimes are brought into the state illegally. These bills send a clear message that this will not be tolerated,” said Singleton (D-Burlington). “If you provide the car that enables a trafficker to smuggle guns into our neighborhoods, get ready to buy a new one. If you’re going to smuggle guns, understand that you are going to spend a considerable time in jail.”

The bills are part of the ongoing Assembly Democratic gun violence prevention initiative.

“Gun violence has become an epidemic in many of our communities. There is no one solution to gun violence, but these and other gun violence prevention measures we are proposing can collectively help put a dent on gun crime,” said Oliver (D-Essex). “Whether it means forfeiting your car or your freedom, this bill ensures that if you smuggle guns into our state, you will pay the price.”

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