BATF Thrown a Curve Ball in
the Bob Stewart Case?
Bob Stewart's Gun Rights Seem to Have
Been Retroactively Restored.
from Angel Shamaya
August 22, 2001
-- Arizona gun kit maker Bob Stewart just received some fascinating news. On the
day before the federal anti-Second-Amendment trial against him was to begin, his
civil rights, including his gun rights, were restored by an Arizona judge.
According to a two-page ORDER signed by Arizona Magistrate Lindsay Ellis
of the Superior Court of the State of Arizona, Maricopa County, on August 20,
"IT IS ORDERED that the civil rights of
applicant Robert D. Stewart aka Robert W. Stewart, be restored, including the
restoration of his right to possess firearms."
Considering the fact that BATF's prosecuting attorneys have been seeking prosecution on "felon in possession
of firearms" charges, the above is quite relevant.
But far more intriguing is the fact that
the ORDER by the judge is backdated to August of 1998.
"IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that these rights
be restored nunc pro tunc
to August 17, 1998."
"Nunc pro tunc" literally means
"now for then." Translated, a "nunc pro tunc" order by
the court is to be treated as if it were ordered on the date ORDERED -- in this
case, August 17, 1998. Could it be that the BATF's prosecution isn't
prosecuting a "prior felon in possession" anymore?
If you would like to read the actual court
ORDER, do so by clicking these links: PAGE
WHY THIS IS RELEVANT
BATF agents originally invaded Mr.
Stewart's home and pointed a machinegun at one of his young boys because they said the
gun kit he was selling was "readily converted." And though they
have no official definition of what that term means, they used it to justify
stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of personal property,
confiscating his customer list of approximately 3,000 names/addresses, etc., and
basically ruining this good man's life. BUT, when they knew their
forceful method of inventing a definition of the term "readily
converted" was a LOSER, they decided to prosecute Mr. Stewart for being a
felon in possession of firearms they allegedly found in his home during
their violent invasion.
But his restoration of rights is dated long
before the BATF conducted their "raid" on his home and family. See above documents.
His rights have been restored, officially dated back to August of 1998 -- and
the BATF machinegunners assaulted Mr. Stewart and his family much later than
that date -- in June of 2000. Get the picture?
So now what are these BATF folks going to do in
their bid to put Mr. Stewart in jail for a very long time?
According to the BATF -- who has been
caught lying in the past -- Mr. Stewart was also allegedly in possession of
unregistered machineguns. One reasonable guess is that they'll proceed with
prosecution over an alleged violation of the unconstitutional ban on
"unregistered" machinegun possession. If they do that, we'd have a
case worthy of going all the
way to the Supreme Court, where the ban on "unregistered" machineguns
can be rightly challenged as a violation of the Second Amendment.
There are of course other possibilities;
well-funded gungrabbers usually have something up their sleeve.
- Prosecutors may (probably will) say that the
restoration of Mr. Stewart's rights being backdated is only a clerical issue
and that he was still, for all intents and purposes, a "felon in
possession of firearms."
- One Arizona gun rights activist suggested on
Tuesday that the BATF "claims to reserve the right to pass on whether
your 'gun rights' have been restored", suggesting that they'd deny
Stewart's restoration in order to fricassee him. (That would be a very, very
bad move considering the fact that the BATF's annual budget is $760 Million
but they claim to "not have funding" to restore gun rights -- and
for many other reasons. There would also appear, in my unlawyerly
opinion, to be a conflict of interest in their being able to deny something
they allegedly have the power to grant when to do so would serve only
- Another activist suggested that the
restoration was politically motivated in order to give the BATF an out.
We shall see soon enough.
WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT?
Naturally, Mr. Stewart filed a MOTION TO
DISMISS in court on the day when his trial proceedings were due to begin,
Tuesday, August 21, 2001. Judge Roslyn O. Silver -- who has refused ALL of Mr.
Stewart's motions thus far -- has given federal prosecutor Welty until September
5th to respond to Mr. Stewart's MOTION TO DISMISS. Mr. Stewart will then
be given FIVE DAYS to respond to the "MOTION TO LOCK HIM UP AND THROW AWAY
THE KEY" we expect
from Welty. (REPEAT: BATF has a $760 Million annual budget and has been
given 14 days to respond. Once they do, Mr. Stewart, who is now working
another job to replace the income stolen from him by BATF, gets only 5 days --
and Stewart is defending himself.)
To my knowledge, a new trial date has not yet
been set. When a date is set or any new information comes in, you will hear about it on
KeepAndBearArms.com. And we will post each page of what Mr. Welty has to say the
very day it is delivered to Mr. Stewart.
CALLING FOR HELP FROM ATTORNEYS
I have personally been called names like
"stupid" and "foolish" and "ridiculous" for
supporting Bob Stewart throughout his ordeal -- even by "pro RKBA"
attorneys -- because "you look bad if you support a prior felon in
possession." (I'll save for another day my commentary about the fact that
Mr. Stewart was a non-violent "felon" who claims he was lied to
by BATF agents to, in his admitted ignorance, plead guilty the first time
he was assaulted by federal agents.) But that isn't the way it is now;
we've cured his cooties for you -- and I would appreciate a few Real American
attorneys stepping forward as soon as we receive the response from BATF's
prosecutor. Expect to see that on or shortly after the 5th of September.
If you are a pro-RKBA attorney willing to take a look at the BATF's response as
soon as it comes in, please email me directly at Director@KeepAndBearArms.com
with a subject of KABA PRO GUN ATTORNEY.
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