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Gun Laws in Brazil, a First-hand Account

PT-BR O artigo que segue, em inglês, sobre minha experiência em comprar minha primeira arma de fogo foi escrito para ser publicado num fórum estrangeiro sobre armas de fogo a pedido de um terceiro. Como isso nunca aconteceu, estou disponibilizando aqui, só para que todos esses bytes não morram inúteis.

EN The following article about my experience in purchasing my first handgun was intended to be published in a handgun forum, by request of a third party. Since this never happened, I am publishing it here, just so all these bytes donʼt die. Please forgive my written English, as it is not my first language.

Full disclosure: I am not a lawyer. What follows is my understanding of the current legislation in Brazil regarding firearms ownership, transportation and commerce, and my limited experience in going through the processes of becoming a shooter and acquiring my first handgun.


Brazilʼs gun liberties have been declining since the early 1990ʼs, while Fernando Henrique Cardosoʼs was president. Before this time, you could buy handguns, shotguns and rifles in stores and walk out with your purchase. In 2005, under former president Lulaʼs government, a referendum was held in which the people were asked to vote if “the commerce of firearms and ammunition should be prohibited in Brazil”. Over 59 million people voted “no” to this question (63.94%), hoping to preserve our rights to buy and keep guns, albeit still under strict government control.

In spite of the overwhelming popular demand that these rights should be kept, it is nearly impossible; if not ridiculously expensive, bureaucratic and a seemingly endless process to be a gun owner in Brazil.

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