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Congresswoman Sánchez Introduces Amendment to Protect Rights of Domestic Violence Victims

May 25, 2005
Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Advocating for women’s rights, Congresswoman Linda T. Sánchez (CA-39) today introduced an amendment to H.R. 800, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, to protect the rights of domestic violence victims to sue criminal gun sellers.

H.R. 800 will make gun merchants immune from civil liability for the acts of their customers. But federal law makes it a crime for gun merchants to sell to persons with misdemeanor convictions for domestic violence.

As it stands now, if H.R. 800 becomes law, gun sellers who break the law and sell guns to persons with domestic violence convictions will be immune from civil liability.

“Allowing this to happen would be an absolute travesty. For the thousands of women who are terrorized by abusive men, it is both an insult and a threat to their safety,” said Congresswoman Linda Sánchez.

The amendment would carve out an exception to H.R. 800’s overall ban on lawsuits against gun sellers. It would allow a person harmed by a gun illegally sold to a person with a domestic violence conviction, to sue the person who made the illegal gun sale.

“This amendment makes sense. It strikes a good balance between protecting women from violence and appeasing the supporters of H.R. 800 who believe there are excessive lawsuits against the gun industry,” added Congresswoman Sánchez.