A group of bipartisan U.S. senators has agreed on legislation to combat gun trafficking. They say the Senate Judiciary Committee will consider the measure later this week.
The Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act of 2013 provides law enforcement officials with the tools they need to investigate and prosecute gun trafficking and straw purchasing, which is when a person buys a firearm for someone else who is prohibited from obtaining one on his or her own. The measure combines legislation Democratic Senator from Vermont Patrick Leahy introduced at the beginning of the year with Democrat Dick Durbin of Illinois, with a separate anti-trafficking bill Democratic Senator from New York Kirsten Gillibrand and Republican Senator from Illinois Mark Kirk introduced earlier this year. Republican Senator Susan Collins from Maine is also behind the bill. Currently, there is no federal law that defines either gun trafficking or straw purchasing as crimes.