Tag Archives: license

Donald Trump Jr.’s Confidential Firearm License Information is Disclosed by Pennsylvania Judge

The Time-Tribune is reporting that Lackawanna County Judge Thomas Munley disclosed on Wednesday that Donald Trump Jr. applied for a license to carry firearms (LTCF), after Lackawanna County Sheriff Mark McAndrew refused to disclose the purpose of Mr. Trump’s visit, likely due to the confidentiality provisions of all LTCF applicant information.

18 Pa.C.S. § 6111(i) provides in pertinent part:

(i) Confidentiality.–All information provided by the … applicant, including, but not limited to, the … applicant’s name or identity, furnished by … any applicant for a license to carry a firearm as provided by section 6109 shall be confidential and not subject to public disclosure. In addition to any other sanction or penalty imposed by this chapter, any person, licensed dealer, State or local governmental agency or department that violates this subsection shall be liable in civil damages in the amount of $1,000 per occurrence or three times the actual damages incurred as a result of the violation, whichever is greater, as well as reasonable attorney fees.

As many of our viewers are aware, a little over a year ago, I was successful in John Doe, et al. v. County of Franklin, et al,. in having the Commonwealth Court declare that the use of unenveloped postcards, where LTCF applicant information was specified on the postcard, was a violation of Section 6111(i). In fact, the court specifically held that:

“any person, licensed dealer, State or local governmental agency or department” violates Section 6111(i) of the UFA by revealing an “applicant’s name or identity” to a person not (1) authorized to receive such information by statute; (2) involved in the operation or management of the sheriff’s office; (3) representing a law enforcement or criminal justice agency; or (4) otherwise authorized by an applicant. Any other interpretation of Section 6111(i) of the UFA where a License applicant’s confidentiality is not safeguarded would be inconsistent with the UFA’s purpose and structure.

It is unknown why Judge Munley felt it necessary to disclose Mr. Trump’ confidential information and reason for being at the Sheriff’s Department.

If you or someone you know has had their confidential license to carry firearms applicant information disclosed, contact Firearms Industry Consulting Group today to discuss YOUR rights and legal options.

 


Firearms Industry Consulting Group® (FICG®) is a registered trademark and division of Civil Rights Defense Firm, P.C., with rights and permissions granted to Prince Law Offices, P.C. to use in this article.

 

 

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PENNSYLVANIA’S MEDICAL CANNABIS ACT

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives convenes on March 14, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. One of the items on the House Calendar is Senate Bill No. 3 (“SB3”). SB3 is a bipartisan bill providing for the medical use of cannabis in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. SB3 was introduced as a bi-partisan bill in the Pennsylvania Senate.   On May 12, 2015, Pennsylvania’s Senate passed SB3 by 40-7 vote with 2 Senators not voting (n/v).   SB3 was then referred to House Health Committee for consideration where it was then re-referred to the House Rules Committee for consideration. On November 18, 2015, the House Rules Committee voted 25-8 to report the bill as committed to the full House for consideration. On January 25, 2016, the House removed SB3 from consideration. House Majority Leader David Reed, R-Indiana, has chosen to bring SB3 up for a vote when the members of the house return to Harrisburg the week of March 14.   SB3 has the support of both conservatives and liberals in the General Assembly. Additionally, Governor Tom Wolf has already stated that he would sign a medical marijuana bill. While it is not automatic that Pennsylvania will have a state medical marijuana program as set forth in SB3, it is the closest the Pennsylvania General Assembly has come to passing a medical marijuana law.

From a patient perspective, SB3 limits medical marijuana use to individuals who have a specified “Qualified Medical Condition”.   Qualified Medical Conditions include: 1) Cancer; 2) Epilepsy and seizures; 3) Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; 4) Cachexia/wasting syndrome; 5) Parkinson’s disease; 6) Traumatic brain injury and post-concussion syndrome; 7) Multiple sclerosis; 8) Spinocerebellara Ataxia (SCA); 9) Posttraumatic Stress Disorder; 10) Severe fibromyalgia; 11) HIV/AIDS; 12) Glaucoma; 13) Chronic or Intractable pain; 14) Chrons disease; and 15) Diabetes.

Patients can only obtain medical marijuana from state licensed “Medical Cannabis Dispensers” as home cultivation is not allowed.   In comparison, 15 of the 23 States which have medical marijuana programs allow some sort of home cultivation. SB3 will also require patients to register with the department of health and obtain a medical access card. SB3 imposes a $100.00 application fee for a two year medical access card and $50.00 annual renewal fee. Additionally, SB3 restricts the form in which medical marijuana may be dispensed to oils, ointments, tinctures, liquids, gels, pills and similar substances. Smoking is not a method of dispensing allowed under SB3, typically the most economical and easiest method of intake for patients.

From the perspective of individuals seeking to grow, process or dispense medical marijuana, SB3 establishes a state licensing procedure. To obtain a license to be a “Medical Cannabis Grower” there is an initially licensee fee of $50,000.00 and an initial annual renewal fee of $5,000.00 for each year immediately following the year the license is issued. SB3 limits the amount of Medical Cannabis Grower licenses to 65 statewide. Both Medical Cannabis Processors and Medical Cannabis Dispensers must also pay an initially license fee of $50,000.00 and an initial annual renewal fee of $5,000.00 for each year immediately following the year the license was issued. Under SB3, Medical Cannabis Processor licenses are limited to 65 and Medical Cannabis Dispenser licenses are limited to 130. Employees will also be required to obtain an Occupational Permit to work at any licensed facilities.

The cost may not seem excessive but considering that marijuana remains classified as a schedule 1 drug under the Federal Controlled Substances Act, there is significant risk in paying $50,000 to obtain a license for a business venture that is still considered illegal under Federal Law. For that same reason, banks have generally been very reluctant to loan money to start a medical marijuana business. Any start up money will likely be from private investment limiting the number of individuals or groups who can afford the risk. The license fee is just the beginning as there will be many costs for any medical marijuana facility including: the building or fitting out of locations for growing, processing or dispensing; the implementing and maintaining of State protocols; the installment of State required theft security systems; and the screening, hiring and training of employees.

Additionally, the market is limited and tightly regulated under SB3. Medical marijuana may only be sold to registered patients with valid Medical Access Cards. Medical Cannabis Growers may only supply to Medical Cannabis Processors who in turn supply to Medical Cannabis Dispensers under SB3.

While it is inevitable that Pennsylvania will pass some sort of medical marijuana law, it does not mean that medical marijuana will be easy or cheap to grow or buy. The significant cost associated with SB3 will make it very difficult for the average mom and pop small business to start a medical marijuana business. Additionally, the cost of the medical marijuana is likely to be very high and I doubt it will be covered by medical insurance given it is still illegal under Federal Law. Patients may chose to take their chances and pay the cheaper costs associated with buying marijuana on the streets.   However, SB3 represents a start and there will be some opportunities for some eager businessman to get in on the ground floor.

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Speeding Ticket

Everyone at one point in there life has driven over the speed limit. Some like to drive their car like it was stolen. It is what it is…

What happens after you are pulled over and ticketed for speeding will depend on: the individual who stopped you; what county you are in; how respectful you are; and your driving record. Your driving record could make or break good plea deals.

Most Law Enforcement Officers will allow you to plea to a lesser offense and pay a fine without points. However, there are a few departments that treat a traffic ticket like it is the crime of the century, which always amazed me since everyone at least one time in there life has sped, including the one who cited you.

Being the ex-professional Thin Blue Line, unless you hurt someone, or caused property damage, or have a bad driving record, there really is no need to not allow one to plead to a lesser offense, or even give only a warning.

Most Law Enforcement Officers will work with you on pleading to a lesser no point offense, as long as you are: respectful, cooperate, at least by giving your license, insurance, and registration [no one has to ever say anything without a lawyer present, just be polite, calm, and respectful]. Law Enforcement Officers understand that they themselves have driven over the speed limit and most would rather deal with real crime, as long no one is hurt, or nothing is damaged.

It must be noted, that the most dangerous incidents for Law Enforcement Officers, is a car stop, so no moving around all over the place especially at night.

If you fail to do all the above then beyond a doubt you are going to cited, and will need an attorney.

Some, counties, rare in my experience, and usually because of the individual citing you, will treat this speeding ticket like it is the crime of century, as stated above. Remember, in these counties, reducing points is a good deal.

If, you got nothing lose then fighting a ticket may be your choice. Remember, the citing officer must prove beyond a doubt that you were speeding. Yes, although, the officer who cited you must have all that speed timing equipment checked, calibrated, etc., it is not enough, you also need an expert, an Engineer, to fight your speeding ticket. See 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 3368. See also Commonwealth v. Martorano, 387 Pa.Super. 151, 563 A.2d 1229 (1989); Commonwealth v. Smolow, 364 Pa.Super. 20, 527 A.2d 131 (1987); Commonwealth v. Cohen, 413 Pa.Super. 460, 605 A.2d 814 (1992) (Speeding ticket cannot be solely based on police officer’s visual observation).

Ultimately, the decision is yours whether to have representation or not, but it is always wise to have an advocate on your side, so call, or come to my office in Pottstown, Pennsylvania.

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Proposed Changes to PA’s First Offense DUI Laws

The legislature is up to it again.  They are attempting to re-write the DUI laws related to first time offenders.  You can review some of the discussion by clicking the link below.  Suffice to say, the changes that most of the discussion centers upon are whether it is better to keep the status quo of a license suspension or to require ignition interlock.  Proponents for interlock argue that it cuts the ability to  drive impaired by over 50%.  Those opposed argue that the stigma and costs for law abiding citizens, who only made a mistake, outweigh the benefits.  It will be interesting to see what eventually comes out of Harrisburg.  

http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/local/item/64770-can-a-new-pa-law-reduce-drunk-driving-re-offenses?linktype=hp_topstory

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Has Philadelphia Revealed Your License to Carry Firearms Information? If So, Call Us Today

Recently, the City of Philadelphia, through Philadelphia’s Department of Licenses and Inspections, violated the confidentiality requirements of any License To Carry Firearms (LTCF) application, with its new web application which allowed for disclosure of any LTCF applicant’s information where the applicant was denied, revoked, or appealed. While I didn’t have an opportunity to review the site before the Gun Permit Section was taken down, it would not surprise me that approved licensee information was also disclosed.  Several articles were posted, originally with the applicants names and addresses being depicted (as disclosed by the City), but late redacted once the City removed the Gun Permit section from the site.

Victor Fiorillo originally posted an article here, wherein he copied the name, address and information relating to the denial, revocation, or appeal, which the City website provided. He states that by 9:30 AM on August 15th, the Gun Permit information was removed. By 1:30PM, he reported, “L&I spokesperson Maura Kennedy confirms that the information was removed from the city’s website at the request of the police department. The police referred me to the mayor’s office, and the mayor’s office says it is reviewing the matter.”

By 4:40PM, he wrote “Mark McDonald from the mayor’s press office called with the following explanation: ‘The legal department has determined that this is public information. Its publication is legal. An individual who is denied a permit and files an appeal, that person has waived their right to confidentiality. All that said, within the government, there is a concern about the propriety of publishing the information, and so we’re looking at this again. On the one hand, city government wants to be transparent and believes in the concept of open data. Access to information makes for strong citizenry and effective government. But on the other hand, there are public safety concerns with regard to this information. Perhaps some of it should be redacted, although we haven’t made a conclusion that way. We’ll work toward a decision to whether this stuff gets put back up.'”

Then, at 5:45, he posted ” In light of concerns over public safety and in light of the fact that the city has removed Internet access to the information pending a policy review, we have redacted all names and addresses from this article.”

This is another blatant violation of Pennsylvania’s Uniform Firearms Act by the City of Philadelphia. We are preparing a group of plaintiffs to file suit against the City of Philadelphia. If you know that your information was disclosed or have ever applied for an LTCF in Philadelphia and been denied, had your license revoked, or otherwise appealed a decision relating to your LTCF, please call us today so that we can discuss your options. It is time to end the games played by the City of Philadelphia.

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