California | Appeals Court Strikes Down Illegal DOJ Gun Control Policy

Handguns and Revolvers
California DOJ sent a letter notifying firearms dealers in the state of a new policy that prevents Californians who hold both a federal firearms license and a state Certificate of Eligibility, or “COE”, from purchasing more than one handgun in any 30-day period.

SACRAMENTO, CA-( In a published decision issued today, California’s 3rd District Court of Appeal has issued an important new ruling striking down an illegal California Department of Justice (DOJ) gun control enforcement policy on multiple grounds. A copy of the Court of Appeal’s decision can be viewed here.

The lawsuit, filed in 2014, was brought by two individuals after the DOJ’s Bureau of Firearms sent a letter notifying firearms dealers in the state of a new enforcement policy that prevents Californians who hold both a federal firearms license and a state Certificate of Eligibility, or “COE”, from purchasing more than one handgun in any 30-day period. After nearly two years of litigation, and in spite of both the requirements of the State’s Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and legal precedents on how to interpret statutes, the Sacramento Superior Court upheld the DOJ’s policy. But the Court of Appeal ultimately found that the policy was illegal, agreeing with the plaintiffs on both counts.

“This decision stands for the proposition that Attorney General Becerra and his Department of Justice are not above the law,” explained Brandon Combs, executive director for The Calguns Foundation. “They can’t simply make up the law as they go, without following the rules or having a legal basis in the statutes. The DOJ fabricated and enforced an illegal policy and we put an end to it with this case.”

Combs added that the decision is important for other issues as well, especially because it is citable as precedent. “Today’s decision is perhaps even more important because of the state’s new ammunition and assault weapon laws. Attorney General Becerra has been doing similar things in other areas of state law, and we are eager to show that, like their illegal policy here, those also must be enjoined and struck down.”

Plaintiffs’ attorney Bradley Benbrook of the Sacramento-based Benbrook Law Group hailed the decision. “We are gratified that the court affirmed the important principle that the State can’t take shortcuts when it tries to regulate citizens,” commented Benbrook. “It has to follow the rules.”

Doe, et al. v. Attorney Genera Xavier Becerra, et al. was supported by two California-based civil rights advocacy organizations: The Calguns Foundation, which focuses on legal efforts to protect individuals’ gun rights, and the California Association of Federal Firearms Licensees, the state’s firearms industry group.

The Calguns Foundation is participating in a lawsuit challenging the DOJ’s “bullet button assault weapons” regulations on similar grounds. More information about that case can be found at

About the Calguns FoundationCalguns Foundation

The Calguns Foundation ( is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that serves its members, supporters, and the public through educational, cultural, and judicial efforts to advance Second Amendment and related civil rights.

About the California Association of Federal Firearms Licensees

California Association of Federal Firearms Licensees ( (CAL-FFL) is a 501(c)6 nonprofit organization serving its members and the public through direct and grassroots issue advocacy, regulatory input, legal efforts, and education. CAL-FFL’s membership includes firearm dealers, training professionals, shooting ranges, licensed collectors, others who participate in the firearms ecosystem.

  • 29 thoughts on “California | Appeals Court Strikes Down Illegal DOJ Gun Control Policy

    1. You have to run for Office and win the election. The only way to win is to get them out of office and you in to protect our rights. Same thing for schools, police departments and other Government agencies that have control. Educate your children. They are the future.

    2. Just as some cities thumb their noses at the Feds when it comes to enforcing the illegal immigration laws, I wonder how they will react when the 2nd amendment folks do the same to their illegal laws??
      Karma is a strange thing eh???

    3. and GET THE WORD OUT TO ELECT TRAVIS ALLEN FOR CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR. He stands behind everything Trump and will fix our Liberal Loser State! He is a great California American!

    4. I am not sure the average Khalifornian has the brains to understand just how anti American the state is or how the politicians follow the Communist Party of America “CPOA” line. They are too busy in their dope smoking homosexual activities. Get off your butts people or leave the union.

      1. I assure you, the average Khalifornian does have the brains. According to the law of averages, only 10-15% of the people smoke dope or indulge in homosexual activities. Those of us who lean toward the right, along with those who sit in the middle have been fighting the morons who control the three branches of government. Many of us would prefer to remain in the Union, but separate from California. Let’s not forget that a number of states are ruled by the commie elite. The movement here is fighting in the courts, and in that we are beginning to see some turn around as more and more liberals buy guns, judges like this one are stepping up, increased civil disobedience, and counties (like mine) just passed a resolution that we will support ICE and other federal agencies and not be a sanctuary. Up where I live, we have a big billboard along I5 that says “Welcome to the State of Jefferson”.

        1. VERY WELL SAID!
          But this does NOT apply to LA County, they also do as they wish, and not necessarily Constitutional either.

        2. I think the average Californian is just a hard working blue collar person who still believes in the USA. T he problem is the media just covers the liberal bull crap. You need to band together and vote out the commies like Jerry brown. Your state has so many rich elitist that you have a hard road to hoe. Get rid of Hollywood and start over. I used to think California was a cool place, now I kinda wish an earthquake would put it under the ocean. Your state is being brainwashed. Don’t follow them.

          1. Not cool. You “kinda wish an earthquake would put it under the ocean”. ‘Cause it’s not cool like before. You know, I live in the Bay Area. I agree with 95% of what you do, I differ in that I think Trump is a clown, a fool.
            I live 1/2 mile from the Hayward Fault, and I’m a volunteer emergency communications operator with my city. I was a hard working blue collar prrson until I retired. But when I read comments like yours it disgusts me. Maybe you don’t know how many people would die if your wish came true. Maybe you don’t care. I won’t follow my state government leaders, but because of attitudes like yours I won’t be following you either.

            1. You may think Trump is a Clown but we have needed someone like him in the Oval Office who will speak out, not just orate like Obama does. In that light, I ask you and all others who just don’t like Trump, who would you suggest? Would you want Obama back, or Hillary, or Sanders, or Warren, or just who? With Schumer in the senate in the leadership position, it’s bad enough. Harry Reid was about the same. Pelosi is terrible in the house. Think about that. The alternatives to Trump at this time are zero, zip, nada if we want to try to save this country. Of course we care about the people in CA if an earthquake should come along. But the State has been so influential in “wrong way” politics that it engenders the feeling that we need to eliminate everthing there because it’s difficult to pick out the good folks unless they GET MOVING.

    5. this is good, but how much sweeter would it have been had this judgement and order been handed to that state’s former wretched, corrupt, Attorney General Kamala Harris. The hard sla in the face for work done on her watch, and at her bidding, would make a great tarnish on her “reputation”. Now she’s in DC conitnuing to work her same black magic in the Senate, with obvious eyes on the presidency. She hand picked this Beast (look up his surname in any spanish dictionary) and left him behind to continue her treasonous legacy.

    6. CalGuns, I applaud your work. Unfortunately, for every step you take forward, the Communists push you two miles back. How can we win, with so many politicians stacked up against us? How can we win with the privately funded AstroTurf groups and the media colluding to spread misinformation and outright lies? We need more than lawsuits and the void of gun-friendly message boards. How can we, as liberty-loving people stand up together and have our voices heard? It’s a question I ask myself constantly. I’d love to have someone give me a good solid answer.

      1. At the time of the Revolutionary War, only about 10% of the people favored the revolution. Those who favored it were outnumbered and outgunned by a military force which was well trained and experienced, augmented by German (Hessian) mercenaries and Tories (those loyal to the crown). Yet, the Founders won.

        We have a pro-gun POTUS, and a far more balanced SCOTUS. And even liberal (as opposed to progressive socialistic liberal commie Dimwitcrats) are leaning more toward our viewpoint.

        It has taken many decades to get to this point. We are not going to correct things overnight. But, we can get there IF we quit wasting time attacking entire states for things they have no control over, and fighting over whether the NRA is good or bad for our side. We MUST stand together. We need the USDOJ to investigate the anti-gun politicians who are trying to steal our rights under the 1st, 2nd, 5th Amendments, as well as others. With an estimated 300M guns in private hands, they can pass all the laws they want but if we stand together those laws become meaningless. Which is one reason why it would be a good thing if ALL the pro-gun groups across the nation banded together and worked together instead of trying to win individually.

        1. Please don’t give up. The conservative is the only hope for this country.the commie left cannot win.. their policies alone will cause them to lose. But to win we cannot give up our guns. Just say NO.Stand together and if they try to take them by force, patriots from around the country will come to your aid. Look at Bundy. The patriot army stood up to the Obama army. Now Trump is in charge and we know about the commies in the FBI. So we will win.

    7. That’s what’s wrong with the system it’s been so corrupt for so long people think that they have no recourse and just take what these folks throw out there , it’s partially there fault for voting these folks in, probably under false pretenses. These people need to stand up for their constitutional rights and this crap wouldn’t continue, they all take the oath but I guess that doesn’t matter cause once they get in the agenda takes over and WE THE PEOPLE get the short end of the shaft

      1. That violation of their oaths of office “to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States and the State of California against all enemies foreign and domestic” should be the basis for legal action against them and to have them removed from office. I would love to see each one who participates in violating their oath and/or the Constitution sued and required to repay every cent of pay and perks they received during the time the acted against the people. They should have to reimburse the people for any financial losses, such as the loss of any and all firearms and related items, including ammo, lost to the illegal actions imposed upon the people. The same would apply to retailers who lost financially.

    8. Everything done by the “Brown Shirted” DOJ or FBI needs to examined closely. They are proving more and more each day that their Leadership can not be Trusted.

      1. @Charlie, I think the article is about the California DOJ. As to the USDOJ and the FBI, I am confident that they would have picked a very nice POTUS for us, had they succeeded. (Please note: that last sentence is a joke.)

      2. Let’s keep things in perspective. The DOJ, FBI,CIA, and our military forces are filled with professional people whose only concern is keeping our country safe and stable. They don’t care about abortion, gay marriage, welfare mammys,or any other silliness that political parties squabble over. They have been a large reason why our grandfathers, fathers, and ourselves have woken up free men every morning for generations. To hear a Hollywood/New York city elite reality television star disparage them simply to save his own ass makes me want to puke in my mouth. I wouldn’t accept it from any dirt bag politician. I understand that most on this website backs the Republican Party because their whore politicians take the money from the gun lobby and that makes makes them feel that they will protect gun rights. But always remember that if any administration is able to eliminate the structures that are in place to police them, then they will next turn toward taking power from the people. The biggest threat to that will be those of us who own firearms. So choose your side carefully because a man like Robert Mueller has more integrity and patriotism in his pinky finger than Donald Trump has in his entire family tree. Mueller was fighting the communists in Vietnam while Trump was getting six doctor’s notes written up by his rich daddy.

        1. Jon, I am not a Republican, I am a Conservative. I vote for those most likely to be pro-rights. That typically is Republican politicians. Unfortunately, they, too, have beliefs that aren’t shared by me, but it’s typically vote for them or have anti-rights stooges get elected.

          Mueller may have fought in Vietnam, but he lost his integrity when he continues to “investigate” after it is quite clear after over one year that there is no collusion by Trump. If he had integrity, he would ask to persue the Clintons and the DNC. It’s quite clear they used federal agencies in their attempt to overthrow our election system, in which they were successful the prior two presidential elections.

      3. The majority of FBI and other agents are not brown shirts. Like any profession, there are some bad apples. The leadership sets the atmosphere. If they are bad apples, then they give the whole organization a bad reputation. There are scores of worker bees who are highly dedicated and are disgusted by present conditions.

        1. DaveW,

          Why don’t you tell that to those who were murdered on Ruby Ridge, and the 23 children and 22 adults at Waco who were exterminated by those Splendid people in the FBI?

          The alphabet soup agencies how’s Jack booted thugs, who’s only loyalty and Allegiance is to their own careers.

          The empirical evidence is overwhelming to support my viewpoint.

          They are not to be trusted, and they are not to be given any slack.

    9. Unfortunately he will not be held personally liable and will not lose his job and face prison time, unlike those he would have sought to punish under his illegal act. He and the state should be required to pay an enormous penalty for not abiding by the laws of the state and honoring his oath of office.

      There can be no compromise. One can’t compromise with those whose goal is disarmament.

    10. Push back people. Pay close attention. This year, Jan of 2018, The Washington State Legislature proposed 7 anti-firearm control laws to be adopted and ratified as Law. These illegal gun grabbing proposals include forcing gun owners to keep all Firearms under Lock and Key 24/7, to banning any and all Trigger modifications, including common Trigger enhancements for Target and Competition Shooters. There is a Large Magazine Capacity Ban proposal as well. All 7 of these are Unconstitutional proposals of the United States Constitution and The Washington State Constitution.. This is beyond outrageous. It is outright TREASON. Really, these “Gun Grabbers” need to be held accountable for repeated attempts to overthrow the 2nd Amendment. We now interpret their aggressive and egregious actions as TREASON.

      This is what we have allowed to happen, The slow drip drip drip, mission creep.They are chipping away at the 2nd a little bit at a time, each year, year after year. Now it is time for major “push back” and there is now a “line drawn in the sand” by them, the Gun Grabbers. This is their creation. They own it. Yes, it is their making.

      So what to do? Simple, Fight back with the pen. It makes a difference. When you send these politicians Cease and Desist letters, instructing them that their Actions may be deemed “Treasonous”, and if they continue, they will be arrested, detained, and charged with TREASON for attempting to overthrow the United States Constitution. It works. They back off. I have proof that they will back off. My elected Representative where I live responded to me in writing, and he clearly understood the consequences and stopped the push to pass the bills. He responded to my letter in less than 6 days. HUGE Victory.

      That is what must happen. Instruct them that they, themselves will be charged with TREASON. No threats. Make sure you tell them it is a PROMISE and they will back off. It worked for me, it will work for you. We, Patriots in Washington State with the help of the NRA-ILA, have shut the Washington State Gun Grabbers down for this year. But wait a minute. Rest assured, these Anti-2nd amendment fools will be back at it next year. They simply never quit, and nor should you or I, ever quite pushing back.

      Get involved,let these Law Makers know how you STAND. Time is short, now get busy with it. Do it today and watch the cowards run for cover. You have the power of the Pen. Use it or loose it.

      1. @ Mr Walker, as a lifelong resident here in californicate, myself and others such as myself have sent the letters you suggested in your statement. Not once have I ever gotten a reply. Just more illegal gun laws. I purchased my AR 2yrs ago, legally here. Now I’m being told that my flash hider needs to be removed and I am required to swap out the lower so that when I change out the mag, I have to separate the upper from the lower to lift mag out. Oh, and the bullet button also makes my AR a felony to possess. But, due to a judge who interprets the law as written, saved our hides on 30rnd mags. So far anyway. God bless him! But, the anti gun disease of californicate is making its way thru the nation. As you state, Washington state is now writing violations to both constitutions, Oregon also is doing same, and Nevada looks to be following. Plan on being
        here about 4-6 mos more, then gone.

      2. you make good points . i like your style with due process but i would never refer to them as . cowards for correcting there mistake . i think more SHOULD BE put on the spot , and soon, for not being sure the laws they consider, pass constitutional muster BEFORE its voted on. come on. when taking there oath of office they said that’s what they’d do. (up hold and defend the constitution against all enimeys forien and domestic) holding ever one of them to it HAS to be done on every occasion , that’s OUR JOB in this deal to many of us have slacked off for way to long or not bin engaged enough. sorry for bad spelling.
        thank you

    11. Commiefornia needs to be stomped on and hard. Commiefornians need to decide if they want to belong to America if not the Pacific ocean is near,grab a paddle and start paddling to their new Commiforniatopia,which ever island that is.

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