Rep. Reick Favors Enhanced Penalties for Firearm “Straw Purchasers”

WOODSTOCK… In an effort to stop “straw purchasers” from buying guns that end up in the hands of criminals and gang members, State Representative Steve Reick (RWoodstock) has filed H.B. 4807, which addresses the persistent problem of illegal gun trafficking that’s leading to out-of-control gun violence in Illinois.

“Illinois has a rampant crime problem. A big part of that problem is the pipeline of guns purchased by intermediaries who immediately hand them over to be used in crimes.” Reick said. “My legislation makes such straw purchasers responsible for their actions and specifically defines harsher penalties for people who are part of that pipeline.”

Reick says he favors enhanced criminal penalties for unlawful use or possession of weapons by felons and street gang members and the unlawful sale or delivery of firearms.

“Under my bill, if you knowingly sell or give a firearm to a person who has been convicted of a felony or who is a street gang member or sell or give a firearm that has been purchased or acquired out of state to a convicted felon or street gang member, you will face tough felony charges with enhanced sentencing minimums,” Reick said.

HB 4807 would prohibit any period of probation, a term of imprisonment or conditional discharge to any person charged with a second or subsequent conviction for the knowing, unlawful sale or delivery of firearms to felons or street gang members.

“This directly targets instances in which straw purchasers are either not prosecuted or are let off the hook with light sentences and are then able to illegally put more firearms into the hands of violent criminals, which continues the cycle of violent crime,” said Reick.  

“The omnibus criminal justice bill passed by the Democrats last year had nothing to do with justice for innocent Illinois residents who are victims of this scourge of violence or breaking the network that continues to bring illegal guns and substances into our communities every day,” Reick said. “H.B. 4807 will help us get to the root of that problem.”