4.18.922(a) False Statement in Connection With Acquisition of a Firearm,

18 U.S.C. § 922(a)(6) See Statute

[Defendant] is charged with making a false statement in connection with trying to buy a [firearm/ammunition], specifically [insert alleged false statement]. It is against federal law to knowingly make a false statement in connection with trying to buy a [firearm/ammunition]. For you to find [defendant] guilty of this crime, you must be convinced that the government has proven each of these things beyond a reasonable doubt:

First, that [defendant] knowingly made a false statement as charged in the Indictment;

Second, that at the time [he/she] made the statement, [defendant] was trying to buy a [firearm/ammunition] from a [licensed dealer/licensed importer/licensed manufacturer/ licensed collector]; and

Third, that the statement was intended to, or likely to, deceive the licensed dealer/licensed importer/licensed manufacturer/licensed collector] about a fact material to the lawfulness of the sale.

The government does not have to prove that [defendant] knew that he/she was violating the law.

A statement is “false” if it is untrue when made.

A false statement is made “knowingly” if the person making it knows that it is false or demonstrates a reckless disregard for the truth, with a conscious purpose to avoid learning the truth.

A fact is “material” if it has a natural tendency to influence or to be capable of influencing the decision of the [licensed dealer/licensed importer/licensed manufacturer/licensed collector] as to whether it is lawful to sell the [firearm/ammunition] to the buyer, regardless of whether the [licensed dealer/licensed importer/licensed manufacturer/licensed collector] actually relies upon the statement.

Intent or knowledge may not ordinarily be proven directly because there is no way of directly scrutinizing the workings of the human mind. In determining what [defendant] knew or intended at a particular time, you may consider any statements made or acts done or omitted by [defendant] and all other facts and circumstances received in evidence that may aid in your determination of [defendant]’s knowledge or intent. You may infer, but you certainly are not required to infer, that a person intends the natural and probable consequences of acts knowingly done or knowingly omitted. It is entirely up to you, however, to decide what facts are proven by the evidence received during this trial.


(1) United States v. Currier, 621 F.2d 7, 10 (1st Cir. 1980), stated that section 922(a)(6) “does not require a showing that appellant ‘knowingly’ violated the law; it simply requires proof that appellant ‘knowingly’ made a false statement.”

(2) The definition of “knowingly” is different from the customary definition of “knowingly” in Pattern 2.14 for other types of offenses. It comes from United States v. Wright, 537 F.2d 1144, 1145 (1st Cir. 1976), a case arising under 18 U.S.C. § 922(a)(6). United States v. Santiago-Fraticelli, 730 F.2d 828, 831 (1st Cir. 1984), emphasized that section 922(a)(6)’s scope is “not limited to situations in which an accused knew he was lying.” “[W]hen a person recklessly fails to ascertain the meaning of the questions contained in Form 4473, and simply answers the questions without regard to whether the answers are truthful,” he is acting “knowingly” for purposes of this section.

(3) Section 922 does not require proof that the transaction was in interstate commerce. The requirement of a transaction with a licensed dealer is sufficient. Those dealers’ general involvement with interstate commerce is ample to justify federal regulation of even intrastate sales. United States v. Crandall, 453 F.2d 1216, 1217 (1st Cir. 1972).

(4) The definition of “material” is modified from United States v. Arcadipane, 41 F.3d 1, 7 (1st Cir. 1994).

(5) If necessary, a definition of “firearm” can be taken from the statute, 18 U.S.C. § 921(a)(3).