By Alex Osinski
I have been hearing more and more about misrepresentations of law being used to harass and intimidate survivalists and gun owners. The worst part though, is that it is a common method by which younger and more naive people are being discouraged from gun ownership or exercising their rights.
I have also experienced a significant amount of this type of behavior in Oregon and I am beginning to hear more stories about how misrepresentations of law and authority are being used to leverage business transactions and in some cases to wrongfully deprive people of their property or the true value of their goods.
First, on the issue of manufacturing your own firearms. Federal regulation on this is spelled out as well as relevant Oregon and California law more states will be added as I get information on relevant law in those states. The page is link intensive with plenty of reference to official government documents.
One aspect of Oregon law that reflects some attitudes and behavior of many people is that it is very open ended with "good faith" actions and interpretations of law enforcement and people who believe that they are acting within the interest of the law. This rather broad based practice will lead one to believe that it is pretty much made up as people go along. Unfortunately, Oregon court practices often work exactly that way. Some issues that probably come up in many places:
People will claim that your goods are illegal when they are not. This can often enter into a heated negotiation over the value of items in a transaction. The maneuver that the offender puts the victim on the defensive by erroneously claiming that the victim's goods are illegal, and therefore either valueless or subject to criminal penalty unless given up or abandoned. While it is not a crime to misstate law or legal status in good faith, this behavior can readily be recognized as coercion under Oregon statute and Extortion under California statute. It may even fall under federal extortion laws if the communication crosses state boundaries or is involved in an interstate transaction. For a more detailed look at how this comes into play and some strategies on how to defend yourself against this CLICK HERE.