Fighting For Your Rights In The Face Of A Weapons Offense
New York takes possession of illegal weapons very seriously. Arrests stemming from violating New York’s harsh weapons laws can lead to lengthy prison sentences. It is therefore critical that you contact a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer any time you find yourself accused of breaking any New York weapons law.
The Attorney You Choose Can Make A Difference
With decades of combined legal experience, our attorneys at Konta, Georges & Buza, P.C. are nationally recognized, award-winning trial lawyers. Our partners have tried cases in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island, involving weapon violations, murder, drug offenses and other complex criminal matters.
Before defending individuals in private practice, our partners served in the district attorney’s office as well as the public defender’s office. Their perspective prosecuting and defending cases gives them a unique advantage in helping to defend clients today.
New York’s Strict Weapons Laws
New York’s weapons laws are codified in New York State Penal Law Article 265. This section defines what makes the item an illegal weapon. The other parts of Article 265 discuss what degree of weapons possession the particular item falls under and what the sanctions are for the possession.
For example, penal code 265.00(4) states that a switchblade knife is any knife that has a blade that opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring or another device in the handle of the knife. So, if a person knowingly possesses a switchblade knife, they can be sentenced to jail for up to one year.
While Article 265 has many of the weapons that a layperson would assume are illegal, it also contains examples of household items that many people possess without realizing they are breaking the law. What is legally defined as a gravity knife can be an example of one of these household items because a foldable knife that an innocent person purchased from a retail store to help cut boxes in his house may land them in jail if the screw that keeps it from opening easily is worn down by average wear and tear.
The Legal Definition Of Different Weapon Types
Firearms encompass several different weapons:
- Any pistol or revolver
- A shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length
- A rifle having one or more barrels less than 16 inches in length
- Any weapon made from a shotgun or rifle whether by alteration, modification, or otherwise if such weapon as altered, modified or otherwise has an overall length of fewer than 26 inches
- An assault weapon
Armor-piercing ammunition refers to any ammunition capable of being used in pistols or revolvers containing a projectile or projectile core for use in such ammunition that is constructed entirely, excluding the presence of traces of other substances, from one or a combination of any of the following: Tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium, copper or uranium.
Machine-gun refers to any weapon of any description from which a number of shots or bullets may be rapidly or automatically discharged from a magazine with one continuous pull of the trigger. The terms also include what is typically classified as a submachine gun.
A disguised gun refers to any weapon or device capable of being concealed on the person from which a shot can be discharged through the energy of an explosive and is designed and intended to appear to be something other than a gun.
Firearm silencer refers to any instrument, weapon or appliance for causing the firing of any firearm to be silent, or intended to lessen or muffle the noise of the firing of any firearm.
Large capacity ammunition feedings are any magazine, belt, drum, feed strip or similar device, manufactured after Sept. 13, 1994, that has a capacity of, or that can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
Defend Yourself From Weapons Charges
Accusations of criminal possession of a weapon in any degree can be serious matters. Consult with our attorneys for free and learn how we can help you defend yourself against allegations or charges.
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