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Old 19-08-2015, 14:46   #121
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

Please note Steady Hand's note above.

This thread is being close to being shut down, as there is now wandering away from what the OP brought up.

From our rules:

•Discussions about politics, weaponry and religion are permitted only in association with the topic of this forum and will be closed or removed if they become disruptive.

Keep it on subject, and not philosophy, and no personal attacks.

Some posts have been removed.

Edit: MANY have been removed. Any more off topic, this too gets shut down.
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Old 19-08-2015, 14:57   #122
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post
What would you do if a guest on YOUR boat was found to have a undeclared gun when the authorities checked your boat?
Politely ask him for $10,000
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:04   #123
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

Here in New Zealand the cops don't usually carry guns, and us citizens only buy one if we want to go hunting. Getting a licence involves a police interview of the applicant AND someone close to them, and gun club training.
So in our daily lives we walk the streets or sail the coast knowing it's unlikely anyone we pass is carrying.
According to Hollywood (our primary education system) everyone in the US (including kids at school) is carrying, and looking for a bizarre way of using it with malice so a tv programme can be made about them.
I think I'll bypass the US. Take the Northwest Passage! Hahaa!
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:22   #124
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

Like the high level warning format - I think, given the range of responses, confiscation and a $10000 fine is probably necessary, if the Bahamas wants to retain any kind of civil society. I'm glad we have a better range of gun controls in Australia.
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:25   #125
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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What would you do if a guest on YOUR boat was found to have a undeclared gun when the authorities checked your boat?
On larger boats the captain will let the crew / guests sign a paper to confirm, that they do not have weapons, more than $10k in cash, drugs, .... in their possession ...

Regards,

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Old 19-08-2015, 15:25   #126
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

For all practical purposes, you cannot smuggle a weapon unless you fail to declare the weapon. That is to say: Failing to declare a firearm is smuggling! Is it not?
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:27   #127
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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Smuggling??? Being a little hyperbolic aren't we? Two handguns with 100 rounds is not smuggling...it's protection.
Not declaring a weapon in port is not protcting yourself. It is simply stupid and arrogant if done intentionally. It makes it harder for anyone making port there trying to do the right thing. If you think for a moment that you are going to beat the system by "protecting yourself", you're in for a rude awakening.
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:29   #128
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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That P-44 left the dock? I thought that was for show, like the USS Hornet or maybe the USS Bowfin!
That P44 stopped me in the Abacos a few years ago. Just to ask me why I was still flying Q flag after spending the night off Spanish Cay. Told them I was going to Green Turtle to clear. They were satisfied with that and left.

I'm a gun toting American but very aware that you play by their rules. Actually surprised they didnt seize the yacht.
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:33   #129
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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I think I'll bypass the US. Take the Northwest Passage! Hahaa!
In that event, you're gonna have to REALLY weapon up...

;-)

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Old 19-08-2015, 15:35   #130
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

I think a fine is reasonable when someone brings guns into a country without declaring them.

Further, I'd say the captain has the right to ask all passengers if they are carrying guns, drugs, etc and to allow or forbid them aboard.
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Old 19-08-2015, 15:57   #131
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

It is unfortunate that the press manages to portray the image that every American has a gun.

Gun ownership has been falling for years in the US. Currently only 35% of households have a gun. That 35% includes hunting guns and even my house where I have a rifle my grandfather brought back from WWI rifle (no bullets). I used to have a hunting rifle but found I much prefer fishing.

Since you can't hunt from a boat and storage space on a boat is at a premium for antique keepsakes, I'm pretty comfortable that over 90% of the American boats in the Bahamas DON'T have a gun aboard and most Americans think it's pretty weird to do so.

And unfortunately because of a few boats like the MIA, American's are likely to see more attention from the Bahamian officials. And it would seem quite deserved.

.
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Old 19-08-2015, 16:08   #132
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

I find it rather funny that one reply used the term 'smuggling' and all of a sudden the thread turns to whether they should have been charged with 'smuggling'.. They wern't!

Guys (and gals) it doesn't matter what country your in, even the USof A, if you fail to declare such weapon's you will be prosecuted.. In Australia you may be arrested and charged with 'importing' because that's what your doing, your 'unlawfully importing'. Whether you want to term that 'smuggling' or 'importing' really make little difference, but let's stick to the facts.

When people break the laws of another country their sailing too, it looks bad and creates future problems for all sailors everywhere.

And it's got nothing to do, what so ever with 'protection', 'safety', or even 'how a country was founded'.. It's to do with respect for the country you are sailing to.. DECLARE them and no problem, or better still don't take them.
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Old 19-08-2015, 16:52   #133
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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...I'm pretty comfortable that over 90% of the American boats in the Bahamas DON'T have a gun aboard ...
Without having access to official Bahamian records, I don't know how one would draw such a conclusion... Just a hunch, but based upon my time spent in the Bahamas over the years, I'd guess the percentage of American boaters who are 'packing' is considerably greater than your estimate...

I'd be willing to wager that among the charter yachts coming over from Florida and sportfishing crowd in particular, the majority of boats have guns aboard...

Another hunch of mine, is that among the American cruisers that don't dare to venture beyond Georgetown, the percentage of those carrying firearms is likely higher than among those who do...

Hey, it ain't called "Chicken Harbor" for nothing, after all...

;-)
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Old 19-08-2015, 16:55   #134
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

The OP's, and others', point is correct: obey the laws of the countries you visit or risk serious consequences. This boat got off VERY light - it could have been seized by the Bahamian government and the people on board imprisoned for years. Yes, that really happens. Before I went cruising there was a lot of attention on a (American) cruiser who hid an AK-47 and other firearms aboard while he was in Jamaica. No doubt his thinking was that given the high rate of murder by gunshot that he "needed" to defend himself. Consider though that the authorities were trying to end this violence, and saw an assault weapon as adding to their already quite serious problem. They did seize his boat and sentenced him to many years in jail. I doubt he still thinks it was a risk worth taking...

A significant number (but a minority) of American cruisers do carry unreported firearms in the Caribbean, at least in my experience. I personally knew someone (not an American) who failed to report a shotgun and pistol and was held in jail for a few days until he coughed up $4k, then deported (luckily with his boat). I also knew an American couple who had a Mac 10 (much beloved by the drug dealing crowd) and finally got tired of the nuisance of checking it in, and the unwanted attention it brought. Sadly, instead of throwing it overboard, the last I knew they were talking with a white local on one of the islands about selling it to him (they had stopped declaring it at that point). If caught they could have spent the rest of their retirement on a Caribbean island - in jail. And consider that the serial number can always be traced back to them if it is recovered at any time in the future. I have also met a few who just tossed the weapons overboard in deep water (a safe move).

I can honestly say that there has never been a time in my cruising that the possession of a firearm would have improved the situation, and I am glad I decided not to bring one.

A previous poster asked how to safely transfer a large amount of money. When in Turkey I incurred a $15k debt at a heart hospital (stents) and was prohibited from leaving the hospital before settling (apparently with the force of law). It took a bit of doing with a debit card as it triggered security blocks at multiple points in the payment system, but ultimately it was accomplished in a day and a half and a few hundred dollars worth of phone calls. Where there is a will there is a way...

Greg
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Old 19-08-2015, 17:16   #135
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Re: Dont declare firearms in the Bahamas, Ouch!

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Originally Posted by CarinaPDX View Post
The OP's, and others', point is correct: obey the laws of the countries you visit or risk serious consequences. This boat got off VERY light...

Greg
Yup... Recently an Oregon veterinarian vacationing in East Timor was arrested when a man with whom she shared a cab was arrested with drugs... I think she spent about a year getting released. She didn't even know the guy with the drugs.

I don't don't assume that I have rights when traveling to foreign lands and I attempt to be as respectful as I know how of local laws and customs.
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