Another Firearms Bill in Congress HB No. 3501 by Cong. Jack Enrile
Republic of the Philippines
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Quezon City, Metro Manila
First Regular Session
House Bill No. 3501
Introduced by Honorable JUAN C. PONCE ENRILE, Jr.
AN ACT CODIFYING THE PERTINENT PROVISIONS OF THE REVISED ADMINISTRATIVE CODE OF 1917, PRESIDENTIAL DECREE 1866 AND REPUBLIC ACT 8294, REGULATING THE OWNERSHIP, POSSESSION, LICENSING, MANUFACTURE AND TRADE OF FIREARMS AND EXPLOSIVES AND FOR OTHER RELATED PURPOSES
Be it enacted by the Senate and the House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:
TITLE, POLICY, PRINCIPLES AND DEFINITION OF TERMS
Section 1: Short Title. This Act shall be known and cited as the ‘Firearms and Explosives Act of Year 2010’.
Section 2: Declaration of State Policy. It is the policy of the State to adhere to and uphold the most fundamental constitutional principle that sovereignty resides in the people, and all authority emanates from them. The State likewise acknowledges the indisputable historical precedence that it is the citizenry of the nation that rises to the protection of the State whenever its sovereignty is laid under siege.
It is therefore the duty of the State to recognize the Filipino citizen’s inalienable right to own possess and carry firearms to protect the state, assist police and military personnel as well as to protect his person, family, property and the citizenry at large provided such firearms are registered and licensed to ensure that that life, liberty and property of each and every citizen is protected.
It is thereby declared to be a national policy to codify, systematize and otherwise uphold the right of its citizens to own and bear arms for the preservation of the State, and for the protection of their human rights.
Section 3: Definition of terms. For purposes of this Act, the following terms shall mean and be interpreted as hereunder defined;
(a) “Firearm” - refers to any handheld or portable weapon that expels, is designed to expel or maybe readily converted to expel a bullet, shot slug or any projectile which is discharged by means of expansive force or gases from burning powder or other form of combustion which includes revolvers, pistols, rifles, carbines, shotguns or any other similar form, or any instrument or implement capable of doing the same.
(b) “Light Weapons” – refers to a weapon not less than 7.62mm caliber mounted with 20mm rifled barrel and/or grenade launcher not exceeding 40mm, or weapons designed for use by two (2) or more persons serving as crew or those which may be carried and used by a single person which shall include drum-fed and belt-fed submachine guns, light and heavy machine guns, and portable anti-aircraft guns, portable anti-tank guns, recoilless rifles, portable launchers of anti-tank missiles and rocket systems, portable launchers of anti-aircraft missile systems, grenade launchers and mortars.
(c) “Firearms Parts” – refer to the frame or receiver, slide and barrel of a firearm;
(d) “Explosives” - refer to any substance either solid or liquid, or as a mixture or single compound which, by chemical reaction, liberate at high speed, heat and gas, causing tremendous pressure resulting in an explosion such as: gunpowder, powder used for blasting, all forms of high explosives, blasting materials, dynamite, fuses, detonating agents, smokeless powder, handgrenade, rifle grenade, pillbox bomb, molotov cocktail bomb, or other incendiary devices and other chemical compound or chemical mixture that contains any combustible unit or other ingredients in which proportion or papkins that ignites by fire, by friction, by concussion, by percussion, or by detonation of all or any part of the compound or mixture causing a sudden generation of highly heated gases that resultant gaseous pressure are capable of producing destructive effects on contiguous objects or on destroying life or limb;
(e) “Ammunition” - refers to loaded shells or cartridges for rifles, muskets, carbines, shotguns, revolvers, pistols and other firearms from which a bullet, ball, shot, shell or other missile may be fired by means of gunpowder or explosives;
(f) “Loose Firearm” – shall refer to an unregistered firearm, a tampered firearm, firearm declared lost or stolen, illegally manufactured firearms and licensed firearms in the possession of an individual other than the licensee;
(g) “Tampered Firearm” – shall refer to any firearm that has been modified or altered to change or modify its identity, source, ownership, or any other information or ballistic characteristic.
(h) “Permit to Carry Firearm Outside of Residence” - is a written authority issued to a person by the Chief of the Philippine National Police or his regional directors which entitles such person to carry his licensed or lawfully issued firearm/s outside of his residence for the duration and purpose specified therein;
(i) “Permit to Transport Firearm” - is a written authority issued to a person or entity by the Chief of the Firearms and Explosives Office of the Philippine National Police or by a PNP Regional Director which entitles such person or entity to carry his licensed or lawfully issued firearm/s outside of his residence or place of work/establishment to specified locations for the duration and purpose(s) specified therein;
(j) Permit to Acquire – is the authority issued by the Chief of the Firearms and Explosives of the Philippine National Police to those persons and entities desiring to purchase one or more firearms and ammunition.
(k) “Regular License” – license issued to a private individual for his personally-owned firearm, and to security agencies/company guard forces for firearms to be issued to their security guards;
(l) “Long Regular License” – license issued to private firms, establishments or corporations (with the exception of security agencies/company guard forces) for firearms to be used by their employees;
(m) “Short Regular License” – license issued to private employees who was issued by his employer with a firearm covered by a long regular license;
(n) “Long Certificate of Registration” – license issued to government agencies or offices or corporations majority owned and controlled by the government (with the exception of security agencies/company guard forces) for firearms to be used by their officials and employees;
(o) “Short Certificate of Registration” – license issued to a government official or employee who was issued by his head of agency with a firearm covered by a long certificate of registration.
(p) “Gun Club” – a gun or hunting club, regardless of whether specifically for pistol, revolver or rifle or a combination thereof, established for the purpose of propagating responsible and safe gun ownership, appreciation and use of firearms of its members, for the purpose of sport and competition shooting, game hunting, self-defense and collection purposes, duly registered and accredited in good standing by the Firearms and Explosives Office of the Philippine National Police.
(q) “Shooting Range” – a sports facility established for the purpose of firearms training and skills development, firearm testing, as well as for sport and competition shooting either for the exclusive use of its members or open to the general public, duly registered and accredited in good standing by the Firearms and Explosives Division of the Philippine National Police.
(r) “Affiliate of International Gun Association” – a gun club or association of gun clubs duly recognized and certified as the official local representative or affiliate of an international gun association, empowered to sanction and/or conduct local shooting competitions following the rules, regulations and by-laws of its mother organization; organize, conduct and host international competitions sanctioned by the mother organization and to send official delegations as national teams to international competitions sanctioned by the mother organization; provided, that said affiliate is likewise duly recognized, registered and accredited in good standing with the Firearms and Explosives Office, Philippine National Police, as the sole gun club or gun association that can sanction local competitions using their own rules, regulations, format and by-laws or that of its mother organization.
(s) “Inter-club Sports Shooting Competition” – a defensive, hunting, precision or practical sport shooting competition duly authorized by the Firearms and Explosives Division, Philippine National Police among and between the different gun clubs locally registered and accredited in good standing by the Firearms and Explosives Division, Philippine National Police.
(t) “National Team” – persons chosen by a local affiliate of an international gun association, training for and participating in an international sports shooting competition sanctioned by said international gun association, the members of which, for purposes of this Act, are limited to the Team Manager, the coaching staff and the shooters themselves as may be designated by said local affiliate.
OWNERSHIP AND POSSESSION OF FIREARMS
Section 1: Ownership of Firearms by a Natural Person. A permit to acquire and own firearms of any type or caliber shall be granted to natural persons with the qualifications herein after stated; provided, that the permittee thereafter registers firearm/s in his/its name after proper registration; provided further, that such firearm/s is/are not classified as crew-served weapons, light anti-tank weapons, light machine guns, anti-tank and anti-personnel recoiless rifles, bazookas; provided finally, that such allowable firearms are test-fired for ballistics, stenciled and properly licensed:
a) a resident citizen of the Republic of the Philippines of good standing;
b) must be at least twenty-one (21) years of age;
c) must be engaged in business or profession, or gainfully employed;
d) must have no criminal record involving final conviction of any crime punishable by prision correccional or higher;
e) must have undergone a drug testing examination by a duly licensed drug testing center; and
f) must have passed a gun safety and proficiency seminar conducted by a duly accredited gun club.
Section 2: Ownership of Firearms of a Juridical Person. A domestic corporation that is duly registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and a continuing concern shall be granted a permit to acquire one or more firearms; provided, that the permittee thereafter registers firearm/s in its name after proper registration; provided further, that such firearm/s is/are not classified as crew-served weapons, light anti-tank weapons, light machine guns, anti-tank and anti-personnel recoiless rifles, bazookas and such and that such allowable firearms are test-fired for ballistics, stenciled and properly licensed.
Section 3: Ownership of Firearms by the National Government. All government-owned firearms shall be registered in the name of the Republic of the Philippines and in the name of the government office or agency, and shall be exempt from all fees, duties and taxes that may otherwise be levied to other authorized owners of firearms.
LICENSING OF FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION
Section 1: Authority to Issue License. The Chief of the Firearms and Explosives Division of the Philippine National Police shall have the sole authority to issue Permits to Acquire and firearms licenses to all qualified applicants.
Section 2: Firearms Bond. Upon making an application to register firearm/s purchased under the Permit to Acquire and before receiving the same, the applicant shall post a cash or surety bond in the amount of five thousand pesos (Php 5,000.00) for every firearm registered in his/its name. The said bond may be deposited in a banking institution or issued by a surety company duly accredited by and in good standing with the Philippine National Police.
Section 3. Enforcement of Liability Upon Bond or Security. In the event of loss or disappearance of any firearm covered by the said bond, it shall be incumbent upon the Firearms and Explosives Office of the Philippine National Police to initiate the proper action in a court of competent jurisdiction for the recovery on the bond or security of the firearm.
Section 4. Permit to Acquire Fee. Upon making an application for a permit to acquire and before receiving the same, the applicant shall pay a permit fee of Five Hundred (P500.00) Pesos to the Firearms and Explosives Office of the Philippine National Police.
Section 5. License Fee. Upon registration of the firearm/s purchased pursuant to a Permit to Acquire and before receiving the same, the applicant shall pay the following license fees to the Firearms and Explosives Division, Philippine National Police, for each and every firearm registered under the name of the licensee: The annual firearm license fees are as follows:
a. Rifle Caliber .22 - P180.00
b. Shotgun (all gauges) - P210.00
c. Pistol/Revolver Caliber Ordinary - P240.00
d. Pistol/Revolver Caliber .25, .32, .38
.380, 9mm, 7.65, 6.35 and magnum
22 rimfire - P360.00
e. Pistol/Revolver Caliber .357, .40,
.45, Magnum 22 Centerfire - P400.00
f. High-Powered Rifle (Centerfire) - P800.00
Section 6. Notification of Grounds for Denial. Any person whose application for a Permit to Acquire or firearm license is denied, and any holder thereof whose license is revoked, shall be duly notified in writing by the Firearms and Explosives Division, Philippine National Police, stating specifically the ground/s upon which the application was denied or license revoked. Any notice of revocation of a permit or license shall be given to the holder thereof before the effectivity of said revocation.
Section 1. Duration of the Permit to Acquire and Firearms License. A Permit to Acquire and a firearm license issued pursuant to this Act shall have a validity period of four (4) years each from the time of the issuance thereof;
Section 2. Carrying of Firearms Outside of Residence or Place of Business. The following individuals shall be entitled to apply with and be issued a permit to carry their duly-licensed firearm/s outside of their residence or place of work by the Chief of the Philippine National Police:
1. Cashiers and disbursing officers while in the performance of their duties;
2. Individuals who, by the nature of their official duties, profession, business or occupation, habitually carry large sums of money , jewelries or valuables;
3. Those who are involved or part of the judicial system of the Philippines such as justices, judges, prosecutors, lawyers, public attorney, court sheriffs and the like;
4. Persons covered or protected by the “Witness Protection Program” under R.A. 6981.
5. Businessmen who, by the nature of their business or undertaking, are exposed to high risk of being targets of criminal syndicates; and
6. Such other private individuals and media practitioners who are under actual threat or in imminent danger.
Permits issued under this section shall be valid anywhere in the Philippines except inside public drinking places and amusement, and places of worship.
Section 3. Disposition of Surrendered Firearms. A licensed firearm may be sold or in any way dispose of by the heirs and licensed in the name of qualified individuals or entities upon the death or legal disability of the licensee.
Section 4. Change of Domicile by the License Holder. When a person or entity holding a valid license for the possession of any firearm/s and the ammunition therefore shall change his/its domicile, he/it shall, within ten (10) days thereafter, notify the Firearms and Explosives Office, Philippine National Police, in writing of such change either thru personal service or by registered mail;
Section 5. Transfer of Ownership of Firearms. A firearm can only be transferred when the transferor has filed with the Firearms and Explosives Office, Philippine National Police, a written application for the transfer and registration of the firearm to the transferee in the manner that shall be prescribed by the Firearms and Explosives Office; provided, that the Fireams and Explosive Division had approved such application to transfer and has issued the requisite permit to acquire and license to own firearm/s to the transferee.
Section 6. Lost and Stolen Firearms. Firearms lost or stolen shall be immediately be reported to the nearest Police Station or sub-station through an affidavit made by the licensee indicating the circumstances by which the loss has been discovered. The necessary entry into the Police log shall be undertaken and a Police Report subsequently issued and filed with a copy of the licensee’s affidavit with the Firearms and Explosives Office, Philippine National Police.
Section 7. Deposit of Firearms by Persons Arriving From Abroad. A person arriving in the Philippines and having legally in his possession any firearm or ammunition owned by or assigned to him for which he has no Philippine license, shall deposit the same upon written receipt with the Collector of Customs for delivery to the Chief, Firearms and Explosives Office, Philippine National Police for safekeeping or, if the person is a competitor in a sport shooting competition, for the issuance of a permit to transport. If the importation of the same is allowed and the party in question desires to obtain a domestic firearm license, the same should be undertaken in accordance with the provisions of this Act. If no license is desired or leave to import is not granted, the firearms or ammunition in question shall remain in custody of the Chief, Firearms and Explosives Division, Philippine National Police until otherwise disposed of in accordance with law.
Section 8. Return of Firearms to Owner Upon Departure From the Philippines. Upon the departure from the Philippines of any person whose firearm/s or ammunition is in the custody of the Firearms and Explosives Division, the same shall, upon timely request, be delivered to the person through the Collector of Customs. In the case of a participant in a local sport shooting competition, the firearm/s must be presented to the Collector of Customs before the same is allowed to be loaded on board the carrier on which the person is to board.
Section 9. Presumption of Illegal Tranport of Firearms. Illegal transport of firearms, gun smuggling or gun running shall be presumed under the following circumstances:
a) Any person caught in any airport, seaport or coastline bringing into the country or in any political subdivision thereof, any number of firearms, ammunition or explosive devices without proof of lawful and lawful authority to transport or carry such items shall be presumed to engage in gun smuggling or gun-running as the case may be, and shall be immediately detained and prosecuted for the said offense; and
b) Any person who represents or is found to be in possession of falsified import documents, licenses or permits in claiming importation of firearms, ammunition or explosive devices, or while transporting or selling the same, shall be presumed to engage in gun-smuggling or gun-running, as the case may be.
Section 10. Abandoned Firearms and Ammunition. Any firearms or ammunition deposited in the custody of the Firearms and Explosives Division pursuant to any provisions of this Act, with the exception of those deposited by persons holding a dealer’s license, shall be deemed to have been abandoned to the government by the owner unless he or his representative shall reclaim the same within one year from the time of his departure from the Philippines or within five years in the case of any person remaining in the Philippines or failing to advise the Chief, Firearms and Explosives Division of the disposition to be made thereof. It shall in no case be incumbent upon the Firearms and Explosives Division to retain custody of firearms longer than five years, with the exception of those being held under a dealer’s license, and the Firearms and Explosives Division may sell or otherwise dispose the abandoned firearms and ammunition in a manner that may be prescribed by the same.
Section 11. Revocation of Permit to Acquire. A Permit to Acquire may be revoked under any of the following causes:
a) loss of firearm through negligence;
b) carrying of firearm outside of residence without the appropriate permit to carry issued by the Chief, Philippine National Police, or his authorized representatives;
c) carrying of firearm in prohibited places;
d) those persons subsequently disabled legally to own firearms;
e) unauthorized loan of firearm to another person;
f) commission of a crime where the firearm is involved;
g) commission of any prohibited acts.
The revocation of a Permit to Acquire shall, ipso facto, revoke all the Firearms Licenses of the Permittee and shall require the return of all the firearms to the Firearms and Explosives Division.
Section 12. Prohibited Acts. Aside from those already described as such under the provisions of this Act, the following are likewise prohibited:
a) refusal to issue a Permit to Acquire or firearm license to a qualified applicant;
b) flagrant display of firearm/s;
c) tampering, changing, defacing or erasing the serial number of any firearm;
d) receiving, concealing or storing, engaging in barter, selling or disposing of any stolen or loose firearm or firearms and/or ammunition;
e) pledge or accept as security for a loan such firearm or firearms and/or ammunition; and
f) selling of firearm to an unlicensed purchaser.
The commission of any of the prohibited acts shall likewise cause the revocation of the Permit to Acquire apart from the other penalties imposed in this Act.
MANUFACTURE, IMPORTATION AND TRADE OF FIREARMS, AMMUNITIONS AND EXPLOSIVES
Section 1. Acquisition or purchase and sale of firearms and ammunition. Firearms and ammunition may only be purchased from the following sources;
a) authorized dealers, importers or local manufacturers;
b) by transfer or sale from a registered owner to another qualified person;
Section 2: Unlawful Manufacture, Dealing In, Acquisition, Disposition or Possession of Firearms, Parts of Firearms or Ammunition Therefor, or Instruments or Implements Used or Intended to be Used in the Manufacture of Firearms or Ammunition. Except as authorized by the Philippine National Police, it shall be unlawful for any person to import, manufacture, deal in, receive, acquire, buy, sell, dispose of, or possess any firearms, detached parts of a firearm or ammunition therefor, or any instrument or implement used or intended to be used in the manufacture of firearms, parts of firearms or ammunition.
Section 3: Issuance of License To Manufacture or Deal in Firearms and Ammunition. Any person desiring to manufacture or deal in firearms, parts of firearms or ammunition therefor, or instruments or implements used or intended to be used in the manufacture of firearms, parts of firearms, or ammunition, shall make an application the Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government in the case of an application for a license to manufacture, to the Chief of the Philippine National Police in the case of a license to: deal in firearms, firearms parts, ammunition, indent, gun repair, stating therein the facts regarding the amount of business in the manufacture or purchase and sale of said articles intended to be transacted by such applicant, and the types of arms, ammunition or implements which the applicant intends to manufacture or purchase and sell under the license applied for, and such additional information as may be especially requested by the Secretary of the DILG or the Chief, PNP. The Secretary of DILG or the C, PNP may approve or disapprove such application and, in the case of approval, shall state therein the amount of the bond to be executed by the applicant before the issuance of the license and the period of time by which said license shall be effective, unless sooner revoked by their authority.
Section 4. Issuance of License to Manufacture and Deal in Firearms. Upon approval of the license to manufacture and/or otherwise deal in firearms by the Secretary of DILG or the Chief, PNP as the case may be, the same shall be communicated to the Chief, Firearms and Explosives Division who shall issue the license in accordance with the approved terms and conditions, upon the execution and delivery by the applicant of the required bond conditioned for the faithful compliance on the part of the licensee with the laws and regulations relative to the business licensed.
Section 5. Renewal of License To Manufacture and to Deal in Firearms and Ammunition. All expired licenses to manufacture shall be renewed by the Chief of the Philippine National Police; while licenses to deal in firearms, firearms parts and ammunition, indent and firearms repair shall be renewed by the Director of the Civil Security Group.
Section 6. Exceptions. Ammunition reloaded by duly-licensed and accredited shooting ranges for use as range ammunition or for sport shooting competition purposes by their members, and the supplies and equipment utilized for such purpose are exempted from these provisions of this section.
Section 1. Unlawful Manufacture, Sale, Acquisition, Disposition or Possession of Firearms or Ammunition or Instruments Used or Intended to be Used in the Manufacture of Firearms or Ammunition. The penalty of reclusion temporal in its maximum period and a fine of not less than five hundred thousand pesos (Php 500,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person who shall unlawfully manufacture, deal in, acquire, dispose or possess any firearm, parts of firearm, ammunition or machinery, tool or instrument used or intended to be used in the manufacture of any firearm or ammunition.
The penalty of reclusion perpetua and a fine of five million pesos (Php 5,000,000.00) shall be imposed if the firearm is classified as light weapon
Section 2. Tampering of Firearm’s Serial Number. The penalty of prision correccional shall be imposed upon any person who shall unlawfully tamper, change, deface or erase the serial number of any firearm.
ELECTION GUN BAN AND EXEMPTIONS
Section 1. Election Gun Ban. The need to prohibit the general public from bringing and carrying their licensed firearms with permits to carry during an election period is recognized and maintained. Thus, unless otherwise exempted through a written authority issued by the Commission on Election, no person shall bear, carry or transport firearms or other deadly weapons in public, including but not limited to public buildings, streets, parks, private vehicles or private conveyance, even if given the permit to carry the same outside of his residence or place of work.
Section 2. Election Gun Ban Exemption - For this purpose, only regular members or officers of the Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, other law enforcement agencies of the Government and those who are duly deputized in writing by the Commission on Election for election duty, maybe authorized to carry their licensed firearms during an Election period; provided, that such officers or persons shall be (a) in full uniform showing clearly and legibly his name, rank and serial number which shall remain visible at all times and (b) in the actual performance of their election duty in the specific area designated by the Commission on Elections.
Section 3. Additional Exemptions. The prohibition to carry or possess firearms during an election period shall likewise not apply to those individuals enumerated in Article 4 , Section 2 hereof provided that they secure an exemption from the Commission on Elections.
Section 4. Automatic Suspension of Permits to Carry Firearm. During an election period as official declared by the Commission on Elections, all permits to carry firearms shall automatically be suspended. The issuance of said permits during said periods shall likewise be prohibited.
Section 5. The Manufacture, Importation, Licensing and Trade of Firearms, Ammunition and Explosives during the Election Gun Ban.- The business of manufacturing, importing and sale of firearms, ammunition and explosives, including the issuance of gun licenses by the Police authorities shall not be affected by the this statute and may continue as normal business.
Section 1. Implementing Rules and Regulations. The Secretary of the Department of National Defense, the Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government, Philippine National Police in consultation with the Association of Firearms and Ammunition Dealers of the Philippines, Inc. and the Philippine Practical Shooting Association shall, within ninety (90) days after the effectivity of this Firearms and Explosives Act, formulate the necessary rules and regulations for the effective implementation of the provisions of this Act, to be published in at least two national papers of general circulation.
Section 2. Separability Clause. If, for any reason any section or any provision of this Firearms Carry Law, or any portion thereof, or the application of such section, provision or portion to any person, group or circumstances is declared invalid or unconstitutional, the remainder of this Act or the application of such section, portion or provision thereof to other persons, groups or circumstances shall not be affected by such declaration.
Section 3. Repealing Clause. The provisions of the Revised Administrative Code of 1917, Presidential Decree No. 1866 as amended by Republic Act 8294 that are not consistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed, revised or modified accordingly. All other laws, decrees, executive orders, rules and regulations or parts thereof related to the ownership, manufacture and trade of firearms and explosives that are likewise inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed, revised or modified accordingly.
Section 4. Effectivity Clause. This Firearms and Explosives Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days following its publication in the Official Gazette or in two (2) newspapers of general circulation.