Many California firearm owners were given a reprieve Thursday from making a tough decision after a federal judge temporarily blocked a key provision of the state’s gun control laws approved last year in the wake of the San Bernardino terrorist attack, reports the Los Angeles Times.
At the request of attorneys for the National Rifle Assn., U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez issued a preliminary injunction blocking a law that requires Californians to dispose of large-capacity ammunition magazines by Saturday or face fines and possible jail time.
“If this injunction does not issue, hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of otherwise law-abiding citizens will have an untenable choice: become an outlaw or dispossess one’s self of lawfully acquired property,” Benitez wrote. “That is a choice they should not have to make.”
The NRA and its state affiliate are still pursuing lawsuits seeking court decisions on the law, and those may take months to resolve.
Gun rights advocates and some law enforcement officials said few people who own the newly outlawed magazines have turned them in to police and expect many people will hang on to them until courts decide the pending challenges to the law.
Benitez's injunction will bar implementation of the measure unless a higher court overrules him, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.