Press Releases

Prosecutor Group Endorses Bill to Prevent Terrorists from Buying Firearms

Prosecutors Against Gun Violence announces support for Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today announced the nonpartisan group Prosecutors Against Gun Violence has endorsed the Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act.

Prosecutors Against Gun Violence is a nonpartisan group of 34 prosecutors from across the country. The group was founded by Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr.

“I’m grateful to Prosecutors Against Gun Violence for their endorsement of this important bill,” Feinstein said. “Prosecutors know full well the grave threat posed by known and suspected terrorists. The fact that these individuals cannot board a plane but can legally purchase guns and explosives in the United States is counterintuitive.

“The bill I introduced in February with Congressman Peter King would close this dangerous loophole, which is exploited frequently. In 2013 and 2014, more than 450 individuals on the terrorist watch list legally passed a background check to purchase guns or explosives or obtain a federal explosives license or permit. This must be stopped.

“I will continue my work to get this bill considered before the Senate, and appreciate the support of Prosecutors Against Gun Violence.”

The Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act, which was also introduced in the House by Congressman Peter King, would:

  • Allow the attorney general to deny the purchase or transfer of a firearm or explosive to a known or suspected terrorist if the prospective recipient may use the firearm or explosive in connection with terrorism.
  • Maintain protections in current law that allow a person who believes he has been mistakenly prevented from buying a firearm to learn of the reason for the denial, and then to challenge the denial, first administratively with the Department of Justice, and then through a lawsuit against the Justice Department.
  • Allow the Justice Department, in any administrative or court proceeding challenging the accuracy of a denied firearm or explosive transfer under the bill, to protect information that, if disclosed, would compromise national security.