Sens. Cruz, Crapo, Graham, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Combat Firearm Theft
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), and 18 of their colleagues this week introduced the Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL) Protection Act of 2021 to address the increasing number of "smash-and-grab" thefts targeted at federally licensed gun dealers.
Co-sponsors of this bill include Sens. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Josh Hawley (R-Miss.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), James Risch (R-Idaho), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), and Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.).
Upon introduction, Sen. Cruz said:
"As crime rates rise in major cities, it is crucial to target violent criminals and fugitives-not law-abiding citizens-when it comes to firearms legislation. I am proud to join Sens. Crapo and Graham on this commonsense legislation increasing penalties for ‘smash-and-grab' perpetrators to ensure we uphold law and order in our communities and defend federally licensed gun dealers from being targeted by criminals."
Sen. Crapo said:
"The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects the rights of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms. It does not protect the rights of those committing firearm theft and other crimes while seeking to cause harm to others. This common sense legislation protects licensed firearms dealers, importers and manufacturers, and holds perpetrators of crime accountable for their despicable actions."
Sen. Graham added:
"I am proud to reintroduce this important legislation to make ‘smash-and-grabs' more costly for criminals. I believe in responsible gun ownership - not criminals stealing firearms."
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has reported a 43 percent increase in the number of FFL burglaries and a 15 percent decrease in the number of FFL robberies from 2019 to 2020. While the number of robberies decreased, the number of firearms taken during robberies increased by 53 percent. In 2020, approximately 6,000 firearms were taken in nationwide FFL burglaries and robberies.
The FFL Protection Act of 2021 would:
- Increase the statutory maximum penalty for knowingly stealing any firearm in an FFL's business inventory from 10 to 20 years;
- Impose a mandatory minimum sentence of 3 years for burglary from an FFL and 5 years for robbery from an FFL; and
- Criminalize the attempted theft of a firearm from a licensed importer, manufacturer, dealer, or collector.