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Gun stores remain open due to ineffective laws

Hobbled by Congress, federal watchdogs rarely revoke the licenses of lawbreaking gun dealers. And when they do, stores can easily beat the system by having a relative, friend or employee pull a fresh license - something that routinely happens across the country, a Journal Sentinel investigation by reporters John Diedrich and Ben Poston has found. The newspaper identified more than 50 stores in 20 states over the past six years where such a move was made, wiping the operation's slate clean. The newspaper's review, which involved contacting more than 150 gun dealers, uncovered 34 additional stores with indications a revoked license holder remains connected to a gun-dealing operation. The Journal Sentinel investigation also found that the ATF inspects less than 20% of the nation's roughly 62,000 federally licensed firearms dealers each year and tries to shut down just a fraction of them, with the number dramatically dropping in the past six years. And when the agency tries to take away a license, it succeeds just half the time.

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