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Old 12-05-2011, 16:14   #46
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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Right. So, if the rules are set by the individual states, what are the rules of my "home country"?
The Federal rules if you are from the USA. State jurisdiction ends at the 12 mile limit. If you are sailing under a US Flag, then the federal law of the USA apply to your vessel when you are on the high seas, not any state laws.

Once in the waters of a foreign country, you must follow their laws.
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Old 12-05-2011, 19:46   #47
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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The Federal rules if you are from the USA. State jurisdiction ends at the 12 mile limit. If you are sailing under a US Flag, then the federal law of the USA apply to your vessel when you are on the high seas, not any state laws...
Thanks Doug, but that still doesn't answer my question. We are a US Federally Documented vessel, flying the Stars & Stripes. So we're under US Federal rules. But what ARE those rules? I can't find any references.

Any assistance or references here would be much appreciated. I could have bought a nice FN in South Africa for $450, but the dealer needed proof that I was allowed to carry, & the US Embassy wouldn't help.

Exile, thanks for the link. Yes, a bit old, but it confirms my findings that UK carry laws are much simpler than US laws. One interesting bit in there says:
Quote:
[Question:] Yacht carrying firearms in the territorial waters of another state:
This position is more complex. Whilst the yacht itself is considered to be the Flag State territory, the yacht by entering the territory of another state is subject to that states jurisdiction and laws.
So it seems that the yacht itself is part of the US, but it has to conform (to a certain extent) to local laws of the country it's visiting. This is reasonable, although I'd hope that countries around the Indian Ocean would become cognizant of the piracy issues & realize that more boats are needing to carry (since our military is unable to protect us) & therefore relax their rules somewhat.
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Old 12-05-2011, 20:08   #48
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I've discussed this with a few Sailor friends and shipwrights and their common solution is to glass the gun seamlessly into the hull somewhere. Slap a layer of gelcoat so it looks natural. Then when the pirates attack grab a handsaw and start cutting.

Clearly the most sane and legal option. :0)
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Old 13-05-2011, 04:06   #49
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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Neither funny, nor helpful.
But nonetheless true.
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Old 13-05-2011, 07:08   #50
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

Recent homeland security encounter had them ask 5 times if they could search the boat. 5 negative responses and they completed their paperwork check and were on their way.
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Old 13-05-2011, 07:38   #51
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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Recent homeland security encounter had them ask 5 times if they could search the boat. 5 negative responses and they completed their paperwork check and were on their way.
"Search" is different from a safety inspection...they have the authority to stop and inspect in US territorial waters...but if things look OK and boarding might be difficult...they might move on as long as their questions are answered satisfactorily.
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Old 13-05-2011, 07:47   #52
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

Funny story (true, but may not be possible now). Friend of ours from the 80s was battling nasty seas in the gulf stream one ugly night on his way back to Ft Lauderdale when a CG cutter hit him with a spotlight & demanded he heave to for inspection. He replied "Turn that spotlight off or I'll shoot it out!" Which they did. Then he told them it was too unsafe for a boarding, that he was armed, & would resist any attempt. If they wanted to inspect him, they could do it in Ft L in the morning. The Coasties backed off. But I'm not sure you could get away with that these days...
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Old 13-05-2011, 08:08   #53
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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Talthough I'd hope that countries around the Indian Ocean would become cognizant of the piracy issues & realize that more boats are needing to carry (since our military is unable to protect us) & therefore relax their rules somewhat.
Do you really think that you can carry the firepower needed to resist the pirates in that part of the world? They are armed with automatic weapons and grenade launchers. Are you going to scare them away with a 9mm?
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Old 13-05-2011, 09:15   #54
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

Doug, from what I've heard (& I try to listen hard, as we're trying to cross the Indian Ocean) EVERY time the pirates have been fired on, they've turned around.

Yes, they've got superior firepower, but they don't actually know how to use it very well. Effective range is ~100', if that (talk to anyone who's been in an African bush-war & they'll say it's closer to 30' as Africans always fire from the hip). I wouldn't want to get into a close-in fire-fight. The one thing I could do better is range. My idea was to take out their outboard motor at 200-300'. That's why I wanted the FN (or it's many newer equivalents) - semi-auto with the big 7.62x51mm Nato round.

But actually, I think a couple of rounds over their heads at 400 yards or so & they'd go looking for easier prey. Of course, I don't want to get in the situation, but if our military can't protect us, we have to do SOMEthing.

Hopefully the military will be allowed to simply quarantine the Somali coast. It's only 1,600nm (less if we don't need to patrol Somaliland). Military radars are pretty good, & their choppers are even better. A ship every 50nm or so (~30 ships) should do fine. Define some safe-travel lanes & seach all ships coming in or out. If the guns never make it off the Somali coast, there'd be no piracy. And they wouldn't be able to bring any vessels back through the line either.

OK, this is the wrong forum & the wrong thread & I should get off my soap-box. Sorry
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Old 13-05-2011, 09:17   #55
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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Do you really think that you can carry the firepower needed to resist the pirates in that part of the world? They are armed with automatic weapons and grenade launchers. Are you going to scare them away with a 9mm?
depends on how many you hit first...

I think the SEAL mentality is immediate, overwhelming firepower to suprise the enemy...so getting off a lot of deadly shots early on has it's advantages...
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Old 13-05-2011, 10:20   #56
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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So, I have a strange question: We're a Federally Documented vessel - overseas. Nominal home port of Seattle, WA (not that Ocelot's ever been there).

Who decides what we're allowed to carry OVERSEAS?

Anyone know? I contacted the US consulate in South Africa (where we were when the issue came up) & they didn't want to touch it with a barge-pole.

In some ways, UK law is simpler. What I found on the internet was that UK vessels are allowed to carry a shotgun. But outside the UK they're allowed to carry just about anything - they just can't bring it back to the UK. US law is much more complicated - & difficult to interpret...
My understanding is that the nation your vessel is flagged in determines the law that applies to the vessel in both its home waters as well as in international waters. Thus, US law would apply to s/v Ocelot since it is US-flagged (regardless of the nationality of its owner/master/captain) when it is on the high seas, but the laws of other nations concerning firearms would control in foreign waters, although perhaps with some deference. In case this issue wasn't difficult enough to sort out abroad, we also have restrictive states here in the US like MD, NJ & NY which apparently have authority over US-documented vessels in their own waters (which I thought were Federal navigable waters but I guess that's yet another thicket of legal weeds).

I, for one, would be most interested in any further info gleamed from Ocelot on this subject as they prepare for their Indian Ocean crossing (in this thread or perhaps a more appropriate one). FWIW, I have read the same info about pirates not expecting resistance from private vessels, and therefore being easily deterred. The problem may be ascertaining their intentions at longer range since many incidents do not involve the Somalia scenario but rather bad guys feigning distress or some other excuse to draw close to your vessel. We had this occur in the Bahamas, believe it or not, several years ago, and believe having firearms at the ready while offering assistance (per our duty as mariners) deterred something ugly.
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Old 14-05-2011, 07:13   #57
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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... we also have restrictive states here in the US like MD, NJ & NY which apparently have authority over US-documented vessels in their own waters (which I thought were Federal navigable waters but I guess that's yet another thicket of legal weeds).

I, for one, would be most interested in any further info gleamed from Ocelot on this subject as they prepare for their Indian Ocean crossing (in this thread or perhaps a more appropriate one). FWIW, I have read the same info about pirates not expecting resistance from private vessels, and therefore being easily deterred. The problem may be ascertaining their intentions at longer range since many incidents do not involve the Somalia scenario but rather bad guys feigning distress or some other excuse to draw close to your vessel. We had this occur in the Bahamas, believe it or not, several years ago, and believe having firearms at the ready while offering assistance (per our duty as mariners) deterred something ugly.
Exile, thanks for the clarifications on MD, NJ & NY. We're west coasties so didn't know.

My roots are in southern Africa, so we're planning to cross via Malaysia, Sri Lanka, southern Maldives, Chagos (a delightful bit of magic), Northern Madagascar, & Mozambique to South Africa. The dodgy bit here is the leg from Chagos to northern Madagascar, which clips the edge of Somali pirate waters. But if you check the Piracy Tracking website to see WHEN attacks occured there, you'll see that they stop towards the end of May (until about September) because the seas are too rough for them to operate from the open boats they use for their attacks. So the trick is to transit when they're not there.

The problem, of course, is that the ransoms the pirates are receiving have allowed them better equipment, & they may change their tactics. (And shipping companies have NO OPTION but to pay the ransoms if they want their ships & people back, despite the stupid requests by uncaring governments.)

Also, the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), which controls access to Chagos, is severely limiting how long boats can stay there (as does the Maldives). Juggling the monsoons & when the pirates are there is quite a timing challenge. You can't leave Malaysia later than about early March or you run into the SW monsoon. And you don't want to leave Chagos before mid-June or you run into pirates off N Madagascar. So you've got to find somewhere to spend 3.5 months. A bit more flexibility & understanding from BIOT would be helpful, so we're starting discussions with them.
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Old 14-05-2011, 08:09   #58
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

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... A bit more flexibility & understanding from BIOT would be helpful, so we're starting discussions with them.
Good luck.

See Post #15, here
Marine Sanctuary - Chagos Islands

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According to US information released under the Wikileaks programme on the Chagos Islands, the recently established marine park over the Chagos Is was a deliberate ploy to maintain US-UK defence relations and prevent the return of the islands inhabitants.

Forty years ago, thousands of people were forcibly and illegally removed from their homeland, the British Indian Ocean Territory, to make way for Diego Garcia, a US military base. The expulsion has been described by some as UK foreign policy’s darkest day. Since then the islanders have fought for the right to go home. They won it from the high court, but the privy council took it away.

It now seems, from US information released by WikiLeaks, that the Foreign Office has no regrets over its illegal action, and has been planning to destroy the islanders’ campaign by making their former home a marine sanctuary, in which no one would be allowed to live.

➥ US embassy cables: Foreign Office does not regret evicting Chagos islanders | World news | guardian.co.uk

➥ Sustainable Seas: WIkileaks and Chagos - what we suspected was true.

➥ WikiLeaks and Chagos Documents emailed by UK Chagos Support Association chagosrefugeesgroup.net

See also: “Island of Shame: the secret history of the U.S. military base on Diego Garcia” by David Vine
Island of shame: the secret history ... - Google Books

More David Vine articles:

“The Other Guantanamo”
➥ Foreign Policy In Focus | The Other Guantanamo

“Island Of Injustice: The U.S. Has a Moral Duty To the People of Diego Garcia”
➥ David Vine - Island Of Injustice - washingtonpost.com

“Battle over bases”
➥ Foreign Policy In Focus | Battle Over Bases

“Too Many Overseas Bases”
➥ Foreign Policy In Focus | Too Many Overseas Bases

And if you're still interested, see:

“Empire of Bases” by Hugh Gusterson

Before reading this article, try to answer this question: How many military bases does the United States have in other countries:
a) 100; b) 300; c) 700; or d) 1,000.

According to the Pentagon’s own list < http://www.defense.gov/pubs/BSR_2007_Baseline.pdf >, the answer is around 865, but if you include the new bases in Iraq and Afghanistan it is over a thousand. These thousand bases constitute 95 percent of all the military bases any country in the world maintains on any other country’s territory.
The old way of doing colonialism, practiced by the Europeans, was to take over entire countries and administer them. But this was clumsy. The United States has pioneered a leaner approach to global empire. As historian Chalmers Johnson says, “America’s version of the colony is the military base.” The United States, says Johnson, has an “empire of bases.”

Empire of bases | Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
http://thebulletin.org/web-edition/c...mpire-of-bases
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:15   #59
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Re: Reply from DNR on Guns on Boats in MD

Maryland is bad, New Jersey is worse, and New York is laughable. Only crooks and cops have guns on them in NY and Jersey. At least Maryland has a bill on the floor now to accept DE, and VA's CCW.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:58   #60
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Re: Reply from DNR re: Guns on Boats in MD

Russ, there is no national firearms liscensing or registration in the US. It is left up to the States to regulate. That is why the rules vary so widely.
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