Weapons Offenses

Felon in Possession of a Firearm or Ammunition

Under federal law it is illegal to possess a firearm OR ammunition if the person has previously been convicted of a felony.  This offense is punishable by up to ten (10) years in prison.  For purposes of the federal Felon in Possession laws a felony is a "crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year."  However, there is also an exclusion from the definition of a felony for "any State offense classified by the laws of the State as a misdemeanor and punishable by a term of imprisonment of two years or less."  This means that Iowa Aggravated Misdemeanor convictions do not qualify as prior felony convictions for the federal Felon in Possession of a Firearm or Ammunition provisions.

Possession of a Firearm in Connection with Another Offense

Being in possession of a firearm in connection with another offense is another charge that a person may find themselves indicted for in Iowa federal Courts.  The most common charge is Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Offense in violation of 18 U.S.C. 924(c).  This charge carries with it a mandatory five (5) year sentence that must be run consecutive to the offense the firearm was possessed in furtherance of.  This means if the primary charge required 10 years, if the person was also convicted of possessing a firearm in connection with that offense, the judge would be required to sentence the person to 15 years in prison.

When firearms are involved in federal prosecutions, the consequences can be serious and severe.  In those situations the individual needs serious representation.

Have you been arrested or currently under investigation?

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