UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF LARGE CAPACITY FIREARM
Pursuant to General Laws Chapter 269 Section 10(m), it is a crime to possess a large capacity weapon or feeding device in Massachusetts unless exempt by statute or issued a valid Class A or B license to carry (LTC) firearms. Although possessing a valid firearm identification (FID) card is not a defense to a violation under this section, individuals who have a valid FID card at the time of the offense are subject to lesser penalties than those who do not.
Mandatory Minimum Term of Imprisonment
The maximum penalty for a conviction for Possession of a Large Capacity Weapon or Feeding Device under M.G.L. c. 269 s. 10(m) is a term of imprisonment up to 10 years in state prison, including a 2.5 year mandatory minimum state prison sentence.
Individuals who possessed a valid FID card at the time of the violation also face a maximum 10-year state prison sentence but are subject to a lesser one-year mandatory minimum state prison sentence.
Elements of Possession of Large Capacity Weapon or Feeding Device
To find a defendant guilty of possessing a large capacity weapon or feeding device, the prosecution must prove four (4) elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
- The defendant possessed an item;
- The items meets the legal definition of “large capacity weapon” or “large capacity feeding device”;
- The defendant knew he/she possessed the large capacity weapon or feeding device; and
- The defendant knew the weapon/feeding device met the legal definition of large capacity weapon or large capacity feeding device OR knew it was capable of holding, or readily modifiable to hold, more than ten rounds of ammunition or more than five shotgun shells.
What is a Large Capacity Weapon or Feeding Device?
A Large Capacity Weapon is any firearm, rifle, or shotgun that:
- Is a semi-automatic with a fixed large capacity feeding device;
- Is a semi-automatic and capable of holding, or readily modifiable to hold, any detachable large capacity feeding device;
- Employs a rotating cylinder capable holding more than ten rounds of ammunition or more than five shotgun shells; or
- Is an assault weapon.
A Large Capacity Feeding Device is:
- A fixed or detachable magazine, drum, feed strip, or similar device capable of holding, or can be readily converted to hold, more than ten rounds of ammunition or more than five rounds of shotgun shells; or
- A large capacity ammunition feeding device as defined in the Federal Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protections Act.
Massachusetts Gun Crimes Lawyer
Despite the 2nd Amendment of the United States Constitution granting citizens the right to bear arms, Massachusetts has a number of laws restricting individuals rights to use and possess firearms. If you have been charged with gun or firearm offenses, it is important to speak with an experienced Massachusetts gun crimes attorney about your criminal case.
To schedule, a free consultation with Massachusetts Criminal Defense Attorney Anthony R. Riccio click here or call (508) 226-4500. Our firm represents individuals who have been charged with Massachusetts gun crimes in district court, superior court, and federal court. To read more about Massachusetts firearm/gun offenses, click here.