Stricter Sentences Coming For Straw Purchasers
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By Tony Hanson
PHILADELPHIA (CBS)–A Philadelphia man and drug addict was sentenced to at least two years in prison this week for buying guns for his drug dealer last year.
But he escaped by just weeks a much longer mandatory minimum sentence that went into law at the start of 2013.
Straw purchasers are people with clean records who buy guns for convicted felons who can’t buy themselves.
Now, two purchases will result in a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 to 10 years in prison.
Chira Goodman is Executive Director of CeaseFirePA, a coalition dedicated to fighting gun violence.
“To say I am not going to do it. I am not going to get nothing, a slap on the wrist. Like when the boyfriend or the drug dealer says we only want you to do it, and we want you to go back. They have to be able to calculate in their head now; I am looking at something serious. My clean record is not going to be able to protect me. And that is what we want to see. This is a major source of guns that get used to shoot people in our neighborhoods.”
A couple of people have been charged in Philadelphia under the new law, in effect this year. The cases are pending.