Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Winnepeg Gun Runner

The Winnepeg Free Press reports on the sentencing of the gunrunner Gokhan Ozturk.

A Winnipeg concert promoter was sentenced to 57 months in a U.S. federal prison today after admitting to his role in an international guns-for-drugs smuggling operation.

Gokhan Ozturk, 23, said he is ashamed at the damage he has caused by arranging to have at least 22 handguns brought into his hometown. Only three have been recovered – all in the hands of local criminals, court was told.

We talked about this case before when the two accomplices were in the news. They both received one-year sentences, but what's never been made clear is what if anything was done about the gun sellers. Isn't that where the real problem lies? The exact point at which a gun passes from the hand of a lawful owner to that of a criminal is what we need to zero in on. I'm not sure everything is being done in that regard.

What do you think? Is there a laissez faire attitude about the gun shops whose customers lie on the paperwork or present straw purchasers? Isn't there some way of motivating gun dealers to be more careful? In this case you've got under-aged boys buying dozens of guns from a handful of places. Doesn't that imply a non chalance on the part of the sellers?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.


  1. Every gun sale through a dealer can only go through with that sale if approved by the FBI.

    Is the FBI responsible for arming criminals?

    When should I look for your post blaming the FBI?

    I'll hold me breath till then, OK?

  2. As we discussed previously. If the gun sellers did nothing wrong and followed the laws (which the story you linked to indicates), then what are we going to go after them for? Not following laws which haven't been passed? Not having ESP?

    Frankly, you would have had a better chance of that before the NICS check. Then, the onus would be on the gun seller to provide evidence that the person wasn't a prohibited person. However, if you tried to take it to court now, you basically are saying that we put this NICS system in place to stop convicted criminals from buying guns, and it didn't detect a non-convicted criminal, so the people using the NICS system must be responsible for the shortcomings of the government system in not doing what it never intended to do. Yeah, that would go over well.

  3. If the gun seller did things by the book and the sale was approved by the FBI how exactly do you want them to be "more careful?"

    They're not mind readers you know.

    If home depot sells someone an axe and he kills his wife with it do you expect that they should have been "more careful" and not sold it to him?

  4. What should the dealer have done differently? Did he fail to run background checks properly, fail to require ID?

    Fail to require a polygraph?