US orders dealers to report multiple rifle sales

July 12, 2011 01:09

WASHINGTON - The Obama administration on Monday ordered gun dealers in US states bordering Mexico to report multiple sales of some semi-automatic rifles, escalating a fight with the powerful gun lobby, which vowed a legal challenge.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) sought the requirements in Arizona, Texas, New Mexico and California in a bid to try to curb gun trafficking into Mexico, where drug cartels have waged wars to protect their business.Dealers will be required to report sales of two or more rifles to the same person at one time or during any five business days for semi-automatic weapons greater than .22 caliber and with the ability to accept a detachable magazine.

Such weapons "are highly sought after by dangerous drug trafficking organizations and frequently recovered at violent crime scenes near the Southwest Border," US Deputy Attorney General James Cole said in a statement.

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