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Under AG Sessions, Federal Gun Prosecutions are Rising

Not long after Jeff Sessions was sworn in as Attorney General, he sent a memo to the Department of Justice to explain how the DOJ will make federal gun crime prosecutions a priority. Three months later, the DOJ released a statement reporting that they are following through on Sessions’s direction.

In the statement, the DOJ reports that people being charged with unlawful possession of a firearm has increased 23 percent:

Today, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that, following the memorandum from Attorney General Sessions to prioritize firearm prosecutions, the number of defendants charged with unlawful possession of a firearm increased nearly 23 percent in the second quarter of 2017 (2,637) from the same time period in 2016 (2,149).

“The number of defendants charged with the crime of using a firearm in a crime of violence or drug trafficking (18 U.S.C. 924) increased by 10 percent,” the press release adds.

Sessions also said why going after gun crime offenders is important:

“Violent crime is on the rise in many parts of this country, with 27 of our biggest 35 cities in the country coping with rising homicide rates. Law abiding people in some of these communities are living in fear, as they see families torn apart and young lives cut short by gangs and drug traffickers.”

The National Rifle Association has come out in support of the DOJ cracking down on gun crime.

“The National Rifle Association applauds President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions for understanding that prosecuting violent criminals and protecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners are not mutually exclusive ideas,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director, National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action.