This is to answer the questions we have been getting regarding Mission Orders and memorandum Receipts (MR) being issued to civilians.
A memorandum Receipt is a record of government ownership of a firearm. It is similar to a license except that in such case the government is the owner. An MR can be validly issued only if the firearm is government property.
A Mission Order is an authority from a government agency to carry a firearm in pursuance of a specific mission or task on behalf of the agency. This authority is usually derived from the law or organic Act creating the agency. MOs are usually issued to agents or employees of the specific agency. However, sometimes, the agency has so-called “civilian agents” or “intelligence agents” who are not per se employees of the agency but who are deemed as “assets” or close associations of the agency. Thus, the NBI has it’s “Confidential Agents” and ISAF has its “civilian” or “intelligence” agents.
The issuance of MOs to civlian assets or intelligence agent is valid as long as the organic law of the agency grants it the power to do so, or is broad enough to allow the issuance of MOs to its civilian assets. Thus, if you are issued an MO you may validly carry your licensed firearm.
However, the problem occurs if you are caught or involved in a shooting incident. In such cases, certain government agencies will DENY or WITHDRAW the validity of your MO to avoid undue embarrassment or press attention. In such case, the validity of your MO depends upon whether or not the agency will honor your MO. This has been known to be done in particular, by the NBI in several famous cases such as the Robin Padilla case and the Valle Verde carnapping incident. Recently, certain policies have been circulating that only regular agents in the roster and on the payroll of the agency may be issued MOs, but still the practice continues up to this day to issue MOs to civlians. The beneficiaries are usually those who are close to the head of the particular agency.
In view of these circumstances, we recommend that MOs be used only if the intention is to bring the firearm to the firing range or for competition or sporting purposes. However, we do not recommend that the MO be used as a basis for a defense in a shooting incident. In which case, the validity of your defense would depend upon whether or not the issuing agency will stand by and honor your MO.