Help Reuben King Fight Statist Gun Grabbers

Campaign Created by: Chris Hume

The funds from this campaign will be received by Chris Hume.

Goal: USD $10,000
Raised: USD $ 2,212

Amishman Reuben King, a Lancaster County, Pennsylvania dairy farmer, was convicted by a federal jury in May 2023 for selling firearms without a license, despite there being no clear legal requirement that he needed a license to do so.

King, whose main business is dairy farming, collects and sells various long guns on the side. He mainly sells to fellow Amish. Federal law does not require sellers to acquire a license if they only “occasionally” sell firearms and their “principal motive” is not to make a profit. King's primary business is his dairy operation.

The vagueness of the law was used by federal agents and prosecutors to indict and convict King, who could face up to five years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, or both. Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 23, 2024. King can appeal to a higher court, but only after sentencing.

An undercover police officer bought five firearms from King between Oct. 24, 2019, and March 16, 2020, in three separate transactions. According to court documents, the undercover officer saw, and filmed, an estimated 150 long arms marked with price tags and arrayed on tables in King’s barn for sale.

On June 11, 2020, ATF agents issued King a cease-and-desist letter. The vagueness of the letter matched the vagueness of the federal law. According to court documents, the letter stated that King’s activity “appeared” to bring him within the definition of a firearms dealer, and that he could “possibly face prosecution.”

Joshua Prince, King’s attorney, told The Lancaster Patriot that an ATF agent testified that agents merely told King that he “may” need a license.

“Mr. King left the conversation [with ATF agents] believing that he didn’t need [a license], because it was not his business,” Prince said. “He wasn’t in the business of selling firearms – they told him you had to be in the business. In his mind, he is a dairy farmer, that’s his business. And, as the testimony reflected, he didn’t keep track of sales, firearms, or values. He didn’t even know if he made a profit or not.”

King did sign the admonition to cease-and-desist, acknowledging receipt.

The use of acquiring a signature prior to indictment also played a part in the federal government’s case against another Lancaster County farmer, Amos Miller of Miller’s Organic Farm. Miller was targeted for processing and selling meat without federal inspection.

In both King and Miller’s case, no victims brought any charges against the Amish farmers. For both farmers, the charges were based on alleged failure to follow evolving government regulations.    

For more, visit: www.thelancasterpatriot.com/king

FAQ

What will my money be used for? The funds will be given to Reuben King to use as he sees fit to help his family during this trying time. It will be up to King's discretion, but money could go to any potential legal costs or towards replacing the value of the 600+ firearms that the government confiscated from King, and he will not be compensated for if sentencing is upheld. If King is sent to prison, the funds could also be used by his family to replace lost income. King also may be hit with a hefty fine.

Who created this GiveSendGo page? Chris Hume, the managing editor of The Lancaster Patriot, created this page. For more information about The Lancaster Patriot, visit https://www.thelancasterpatriot.com.

Does all of my donation go to Reuben King? GiveSendGo does not deduct any portion of a donation for their business needs. However, third party processing fees require that 2.7%, plus $0.30 per donation, be deducted. Otherwise, all remaining funds will go directly to Reuben King. When you donate, you will be prompted with the option to donate to GiveSendGo. Please consider giving a small donation to keep GiveSendGo free and donation based.

If you have any further questions, please contact info@thelancasterpatriot.com.

UPDATES

Reuben King Sentenced with Probation, Fine
January 24, 2024
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Sentencing update can be found here: https://www.thelancasterpatriot.com/reuben-king-sentenced-with-probation-fine/

Reuben King’s Sentencing Hearing Rescheduled for Second Time
October 27, 2023
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Reuben King's sentencing hearing was moved to January 23, 2024 at 2 p.m. Address: 504 West Hamilton Street, Allentown, PA. (For more: https://www.thelancasterpatriot.com/reuben-kings-sentencing-hearing-rescheduled-for-second-time/)

Reuben King's Sentencing Date Moved to November
September 5, 2023
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Reuben King was initially scheduled to be sentenced on September 6. He faces up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines. The sentencing has been moved to November 15. More updates to follow.

District Judge Denies Reuben King’s Motion to Set Aside Verdict
August 8, 2023
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A United States District Judge has denied Reuben King's motion to set aside a verdict that could lead to five years in federal prison and up to $250,000 in fines.

In his Opinion, Leeson said the nation’s “historical tradition of firearm regulation” is irrelevant because the Second Amendment does “not cover the commercial sale of firearms.”

Leeson also wrote off arguments that other court cases apply directly to King, including the Supreme Court’s Bruen v. New York State Rifle & Pistol Association Inc. and the Third Circuit’s Range v. Attorney General.

In Range, the court ruled that in order to bar a non-violent felon from gun ownership, the government needed to show that the statute was “consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.” The Third Circuit determined that the government did not meet that burden, because early American law only prohibited violent criminals from gun ownership.

King’s motion argued that a similar burden was on the government to demonstrate that requiring a license to sell guns is consistent with American tradition, noting that the first federal licensure law arose in the 20th century.

Leeson rejected such a burden as necessary.

“Unlike Range, who sought only to possess firearms, King sought to commercially deal in firearms,” Leeson wrote. “Indeed, King already possessed more than 600 firearms, and although that might seem excessive to some, his possession of a good-sized arsenal was not, by itself, unlawful. The unlawful part of King’s conduct was dealing in firearms commercially without a license.”

King’s sentencing is currently scheduled for Sept. 6. After sentencing, King can appeal the case to a higher court.

Read more: https://www.thelancasterpatriot.com/district-judge-denies-reuben-kings-motion-to-set-aside-verdict/

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