The Department of Justice announced on Friday that the number of people charged with illegal possession of a gun was up almost 23 percent in the second quarter of 2017 compared with the second quarter of 2016.
The DOJ said 2,637 people were charged with illegal gun possession between April 1, 2017, and June 30, 2017. That’s 488 more charges than the 2,149 between April 1, 2016, and June 30, 2016—an increase of 22.7 percent. The department said the increased enforcement of current federal gun laws is a direct result of President Trump’s executive order on crime reduction and Attorney General Sessions’s memo on targeting gun crimes.
“Violent crime is on the rise in many parts of this country, with 27 of our biggest 35 cities in the country coping with rising homicide rates,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “Law abiding people in some of these communities are living in fear, as they see families torn apart and young lives cut short by gangs and drug traffickers. Following President Trump’s Executive Order to focus on reducing crime, I directed federal prosecutors to prioritize taking illegal guns off of our streets, and as a result, we are now prosecuting hundreds more firearms defendants.”
Sessions said most of those charged with illegal gun possession were convicted felons, and the charges are intended to send a message to others considering carrying a gun illegally.
Originally published by the Free Beacon.