Supreme Court Of Canada Rules That Air Guns Are Firearms


Here is a Press Release taken from the NFA website, I have also made a YouTube Video going over all of this in my own words and what it really means for us law abiding airgun owners in Canada so make sure to watch my video below for further explanation...

"On Wednesday, November 5, the Supreme Court of Canada issued its ruling R. v. Dunn, finding that most air guns are considered “firearms” for all purposes in the Criminal Code except for licensing and registration.

The Court affirmed the previous decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal, which itself had overruled a decade of its own jurisprudence in finding that air guns are “firearms”. Prior to this case, the courts had held that air guns are not treated as “firearms” unless they are used for some offensive or unlawful purpose.

This decision applies to all air guns that are capable of causing serious bodily injury or death. Most courts have found that any air gun with a velocity of more than 214 feet-per-second meets this threshold. The vast majority of air guns sold across the country are capable of such a velocity.

This decision will have numerous significant impacts on those who buy and use air guns lawfully in Canada.

First of all, the Criminal Code provisions regarding careless storage, use and transportation of firearms now apply to air guns. Therefore, it is an offence to store or transport an air gun in a “careless” manner. However, because the ordinary firearms Storage Regulations do not apply to air guns, air gun owners are left with absolutely no guidance as to what precisely constitutes careless storage of an air gun.

It will be left up to police, prosecutors and courts to determine what charges will be laid, which will be prosecuted and ultimately who will be found guilty of this nebulous and ambiguous offence.

Moreover, as air gun owners do not require a license or a firearms safety course to possess these items, law-abiding Canadians will not be put on notice of the new legal requirements for air gun use, storage, transportation, etc.

Secondly, the offence of “carrying a concealed weapon” now applies to air guns, regardless of whether or not the air gun owner acts in an otherwise lawful manner. Placing an air gun in a backpack, a pocket or other concealed place will now be a criminal offence.

As the Supreme Court has ruled on this issue, the only route forward is through legislative amendment. Canada’s National Firearms Association has been extremely active on this front and will continue to pressure the government and provide all assistance in order to see that this decision be responded to by Parliament."

Canada’s National Firearms Association is this country’s largest and most effective advocacy organization representing the interests of firearms owners and users.

My big concern with this new Supreme Court of Canada ruling is that it really only effects law abiding Canadians. The criminals are not going to be worrying about how they store, transport and handle an airgun and since this new "airgun rule" does not change how an airgun can be purchased, or the fact that a criminal can still be charged with a gun crime while using an airgun in a crime, nothing has really changed by this new law from a criminals perspective.

Even more disturbing is the fact that the vast majority of airgun owners are now criminals since most will not be storing their airguns in the same way a firearm needs to be stored. Most Airgun owners do not have a PAL Firearms license, so they will have no idea of this new airgun ruling or even be educated on firearms handling and regulations, making most airgun owners criminals because for the most part, they will be storing, transporting and handling airguns in an unlawful manner now according to this new airgun ruling.


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