Changing Registration to Frame or Receiver only

From original text of Cdn-Firearms Digest Vol.2 #120, 1997 December 16  

Date: Tue, 16 Dec 1997 13:40:22 -0600
From: "David A. Tomlinson, NFA"
Subject: Re: Eh Dave,

I'm in the midst of looking for the definition of the "Frame or Receiver" argument...I'm having discussions with the local constabulary about the registrations that they say that they don't want to send in for me.

Where in the CCC is the definition of "Firearm" that states that it's the frame or receiver only. I've got a couple of decent guys at the cop shop who I get along with OK, but they're skeptical on this one. I said I hate quoting chapter and verse to them, but that seems to be what I need in this case.

CC s. 84(1) "firearm" defines "firearm" as "any barrelled WEAPON from which any shot, bullet or other projectile can be discharged AND that is capable of causing serious bodily injury or death to a person, and INCLUDES any frame or receiver of such a barrelled weapon..."

The government interprets that to mean that a whole gun is a "firearm" and a "frame or receiver" is a "firearm" merely so that the "firearm" does not evaporate when the owner takes it apart. The "frame or receiver" is ALWAYS a "firearm," regardless of whether or not uncontrolled spare parts are assembled to it.

Our interpretation, which makes more sense, is that the "frame or receiver" IS the "firearm," and it does not CEASE TO BE a "firearm" just because some uncontrolled spare parts have been assembled onto it.

Regardless of how the firearms control bureaucrat looks at it, it is clear that any "frame or receiver" IS a "firearm" -- by definition. Therefore, any "frame or receiver" that fits the definition of "restricted weapon" in today's laws -- and ANY "frame or receiver" under C-68 -- must, by law, be registered.

The law does NOT give the firearms control bureaucrat any power to demand that you buy uncontrolled parts and assemble them to your "firearm." It does NOT give him any authority to prevent you from selling off any uncontrolled parts that you care to strip off your "frame or receiver."

CC s. 109(5) says, "The local registrar of firearms by whom an application for a registration certificate is received SHALL (a) send one copy thereof to the Commissioner; (b) deliver the applicant...and (c) retain one copy thereof."

CC s. 112(3) says, "The Commissioner may refuse to issue a registration certificate..." -- and he is the ONLY person in Canada who can refuse one.

Note that a police officer who is working on firearms control paperwork is NOT a police officer. He is working at his second job, being a firearms control bureaucrat working under the authority of the Criminal Code, NOT being a police officer working under the authority of a Police Act. While doing firearms control work, he is ENTIRELY authorized -- and LIMITED -- by terms in the Criminal Code.

Note for those who do not want to antagonize local officials:

You can always take a "normal" registration certificate, photocopy it, and mail it to:
CFR, Box 8885, OTTAWA ON, K1B 3M8

With a letter saying:

Dear Sirs:

I have removed and disposed of the barrel and cylinder/magazine of this registered firearm. Please send me a replacement certificate showing it as "Action: [blank]; Calibre: [blank]; Shots: [blank]; and "Barrel length: [blank]."

That puts the problem into the laps of CFR/FRAS, where it belongs. Why confuse your local boys? Once you get the replacement certificate(s), you can take them to your local police station and SHOW them that this form of registration is OK.

Dave Tomlinson, NFA