AG Bonta Joins Others in Support of U.S. Ban on ‘Ghost Guns’

In the company of attorneys general from 19 states and the District of Columbia, California Attorney General Rob Bonta backed a new federal rule against ghost guns in an amicus brief filed Monday.

The amicus brief, which is an opinion submitted to the court by a party not involved in a case but who carries weight, was supported by Bonta in the wake of mass shootings and the rise of ghost guns, his office said.

Ghost guns are firearms that are privately made without a serial number, making them essentially untraceable for law enforcement. Flying under the radar of state requirements, unlicensed owners and manufacturers forgo background checks and ownership recordings for these illegally produced firearms.

The U.S. Department of Justice said it has seen a tenfold increase in the amount of ghost guns seized by law enforcement since 2016 -- last year alone, 20,000 suspected ghost guns were reported to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

In response, the Biden Administration issued a federal rule in April to extend firearm regulations to include homemade guns and easy-assembly gun kits. The rule, which will go into effect next month, will require buyers to pass background checks and for manufacturers to be licensed and produce serialized gun kits.

The rule has since been challenged by a Texas-based gun parts manufacturer, which argues the rule is not legally sound and threatens manufacturers' ability to stay in business.

The group of attorneys general, along with Bonta, say state regulations need to be backed with meaningful federal oversight.

“There have been more mass shootings in the nation than days in the year in 2022. In California, we know our protective measures work, but we need to see such action nationwide,” Bonta said in a statement.

In California, state law enforcement officers seized 12,388 ghost guns last year, in comparison to 26 in 2015.

Though the California has the 44th lowest gun death rate in the nation, it is no exception to fatal shootings involving ghost guns. A recent example was in March 2022, when a shooter banned from purchasing firearms killed his three children, a chaperone and himself in a church in Sacramento. Or in 2019, when five Sagus High School students were shot, two killed, by their 16-year-old classmate with a gun made by a kit.

“I am in support of stronger federal efforts to curb the gun violence sweeping our country and the killing of thousands of Americans, including children,” Bonta said. “We refuse to accept that gun deaths are somehow normal when we know that there are effective strategies to stop them. My office will continue to use every legal tool available to end this gun violence epidemic and to keep Californians safe.”



  1. If you want change it needs to be from the Top Down – CA AG Rob Bonta and Gov Newsom both continue to support Soft-on-Crime policies instituted by Prop 47.

    – 2022 Polls shows only 30% support for Prop 47 which has resulted in soaring crime rates and increased release of criminals back to the streets.

    “Proposition 47, passed by misinformed voters in 2014, and
    flagrantly mis-titled “The Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act,” reduced a host of felonies to misdemeanors, including drug crimes, date rape, and all thefts under $950, even for repeat offenders who steal every day.”

    “Prop. 47 which decriminalized drug possession from a felony to a misdemeanor, also removed law enforcement’s ability to make an arrest in most circumstances, as well as removing judges’ ability to order drug rehabilitation programs rather than incarceration.”

    SanFran was able to Boot Boudin out as DA, and LA has Pro-Crime Gascon ready for Recall,
    for destroying their cities with Soft-on-Crime policies
    like ending cash bail, revolving door jails, felon releases and limiting jail and prison terms.

    Looking to November the Soft-on-Crime CA Attorney General, Rob Bonta also needs to get gone from office.

  2. AG Rob Bonta needs to be voted Out in November – more mis-information and politicalization of a polarizing issue, blaming a “BoogeyMan”, while the real threat to CA citizens and their Quality of Life is the rampant crime, repeat crime, furthered through Soft-on-Crime DAs, Judges and by Prop 47 proponents like AG Bonta.

    Prop 47 needs repeal or major reform, but the progressive social_ists leaders in CA declined to give the voters a choice in the matter this past March.

    “Effort to repeal Prop 47 fails in committee” (YahooNews, March 8, 2022)
    An effort to repeal the Proposition 47 crime law failed to advance out of committee at the Capitol on Tuesday.

  3. AG Bonta should stop his political pontificating and work on keeping the personal information of Californians private.

    Under his watch he oversaw one of the most damaging leaks of citizens’ information in the history of the state. What is even worse, it may very well have been intentional. I guess he can pick between:

    A. I am really stupid and a poor administrator
    B. I an evil and intentionally damaged people who I view as political opponents.

    His little political stunt, or gross incompetence, will cost the state millions of dollars and very likely may lead to the deaths of some Californians.

  4. @HB, are you on the SJI moderator hit list? I saw an earlier comment of yours on this article yesterday that did not appear to violate any comment standards.
    Kind of interesting how comments seem to appear and then go away –
    some need to be deleted, but not all.

    SJSpoptlight seems to be worse – throttling down the overall negative comments and alternate viewpoints to their highly Biased, hardly disguised, agenda driven single point of view articles.

  5. CA Patriot, I noticed that a few of my posts have been deleted over the past year. I cannot tell why and they don’t advise why. Some much more pointed post have not been deleted — go figure.

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