Citation(s) from the GunPolicy.org literature library

USA. 2008 ‘Implementing of the International Tracing Instrument (ITI).’ National Report of the United States of America on its Implementation of the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UNPoA), pp. 1-2. New York, NY: Permanent Mission of the United States to the United Nations. 1 January

Relevant contents

Laws and Regulations

The United States views the marking of weapons as a critical element in combating the illicit trafficking of SA/LW. This includes marking at the point of manufacture as well as at the point of importation. In that vein, the United States has taken a close look at its commitments to implement the ITI and made any necessary adjustments to be in full compliance with its provisions.

The U.S. requires all licensed importers and manufacturers to mark each firearm manufactured or imported into the United States with the appropriate and necessary information required to trace the weapon, including a unique serial number, the name and location of the manufacturer and importer, the model of the weapon, and the caliber or gauge of the weapon. The marking must be permanent, legible and conspicuous.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) of the Department of Justice, in its role as regulator of the firearms industry, sets forth the specific requirements regarding markings and employs these markings to conduct firearms traces. On average, ATF conducts approximately 300,000 firearms traces per year, with approximately 40,000 of these traces conducted on behalf of foreign law enforcement agencies…

Consistent with the ITI, and to ensure accurate and comprehensive record keeping, U.S. licensing records of firearms transfers must now be kept for at least 20 years. Although the ITI requires manufacturing records to be maintained for not less than 30 years, U.S. law further requires that these records be kept indefinitely.

[SA/LW = small arms and light weapons]

ID: Q1588

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