Bill would save grandpa’s unregistered trophy machine gun
By Chris Eger
A Japanese Type 11 light machine gun – Kijirō Nambu’s take on the French 8mm Hotchkiss chambered in 6.5x50mm Arisaka — captured on Kwajalein Atoll in 1944 by American troops. Such guns, if not registered before 1968 and not demilled, are illegal in the U.S. (Photo: Rock Island Auction)
Legislation introduced in both chambers of Congress on Monday would open an 180-day amnesty for veterans or their family to register guns captured overseas.
The bipartisan Veterans Heritage Firearms Act aims to allow former service members or their family to declare guns brought back to the states before Oct. 31, 1968, without fear of prosecution. Sponsors argue the bill will save historical artifacts that have become treasured, but legally risky, family heirlooms.
“Our World War II and Korean War Veterans risked their lives in foreign lands in defense of our freedoms,” said U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark, co-sponsor with Maine Independent Angus King, of S.1435. “These firearms represent the sacrifices they made in the name of duty and are often treasured keepsakes.”
The bill would briefly open the National Firearm Registration and Transfer Record to veterans and their family to register certain firearms. The NFRTR is the federal government’s database of National Firearms Act items