California firearms cops seized 1,400 guns, 280,000 rounds of ammo last year | California

(The Center Square) – The California Department of Justice seized more than 1,400 firearms, 50 ghost guns, 300 large capacity magazines and 280,000 rounds of ammunition, reported California Attorney General Rob Bonta in releasing the 2022 Armed and Prohibited Persons System annual program report this week. 

California became the first state in the country to establish a tracking system for firearm owners who end up in a prohibited status.

The database identified who obtained firearms and later became banned from legally owning them. No other state has a system of this kind.

People on the list are generally those convicted of a felony or violent misdemeanor, were placed under domestic violence or other restraining order, or have a mental illness, according to a press release from Bonta’s office. 

The California Department of Justice recovered 1,437 firearms, including 712 handguns. 

Ghost gun seizures have ticked up in recent years. The APPS program seized 54 ghost guns, a 38% increase from 2021 and a 575% increase since 2018.

Additionally, agents seized 308 large-capacity magazines, 2,123 standard-capacity magazines, and 281,299 rounds of ammunition through APPS enforcement.

As of the start of this year, there were 3,347,221 known registered firearm owners in California; fewer than one percent of them (23,869) cannot legally own a firearm.

“As California’s chief law enforcement officer, protecting public safety and our communities from the threat of gun violence is my top priority,” Attorney General Bonta said in a press release. “I’m proud of the work our Special Agents do on behalf of the people of California. These brave agents are rarely in the spotlight, but they are working every day to prevent gun violence from ever happening by removing dangerous weapons from communities. When guns are in dangerous hands, it puts the public at risk. We will continue working with the Governor’s Office, Legislature, and our local partners to address gun violence.”

The Bureau of Firearms, a part of the California Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Division of Law Enforcement, led the seizure effort.

More people were removed from the APPS prohibited list in 2022 than were put on it; meaning it was smaller at the start of 2023 than it was at the start of 2022. 

The DOJ report also said that 194 armed and prohibited individuals who attempted to buy ammunition were denied a chance to do so because of the eligibility check process. 

A copy of the full report is available here

This article First appeared in the center square

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