SCOTUS--Court Rules in Gun Case

SCOTUS--Court Rules in Gun Case

This is a discussion on SCOTUS--Court Rules in Gun Case within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Court Rules in Gun Case Published: 12/10/07, 10:46 AM EDT WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court unanimously refused on Monday to broaden the impact of ...

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Thread: SCOTUS--Court Rules in Gun Case

  1. #1
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    Question SCOTUS--Court Rules in Gun Case

    Court Rules in Gun Case

    Published: 12/10/07, 10:46 AM EDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court unanimously refused on Monday to broaden the impact of a law that adds extra prison time to the sentences of drug traffickers who use a gun in carrying out their crimes.

    In a 9-0 decision, the court said the tough anti-crime provision does not apply to traffickers who trade drugs for guns.

    The court overturned the gun-related conviction of Michael A. Watson of Ascension Parish, La., who told a man who turned out to be a government informant that Watson wanted a weapon for self-protection and was willing to trade illegal drugs for it.

    The issue in the case was whether receiving a gun in exchange for drugs constitutes "use" of the gun under federal law.


    See remainder here:
    http://www.att.net/s/editorial.dll?b...c=-2&ck=&ch=ne



    My question would be how this decision squares with the previous decision that a felon cannot be compelled to register his firearms, since mere possession constitutes a crime, and one cannot be compelled to testify against oneself under the Fifth Amendment. I would love to hear any of our resident attorneys' take on this.

    Also, does this have any implications for the D.C. Case?


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    VIP Member Array MitchellCT's Avatar
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    The federal government "may say that a person 'uses' a firearm simply by receiving it in a barter transaction, but no one else would," wrote Justice David Souter. "Given ordinary meaning and the conventions of English, we hold that a person does not 'use' a firearm" under federal law "when he receives it in trade for drugs."
    _____________________________________

    It gives me an idea of how Souter thinks.

    He seems to like the "plain language", and isn't going to stretch language to find a result.

    Now, if that helps or hurts...I duno. It depends on his view of the text of the amendment and its history.

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