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Fact Sheet - Facts and Figures for Fiscal Year 2016

March, 2017
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Fast Facts

  1. ATF closed 8,525 cases that had been recommended for prosecution in 2016 or a previous fiscal year.

  2. ATF has 10,016 active explosives licensees and permittees and ATF has 137,464 active federal firearms licensees.

  3. ATF conducted 9,790 firearm compliance inspections in 2016.

 
Personnel
  • Special Agents (1811): 2,675
  • Industry Operations Investigators (1801 and 1854): 821
  • Administrative/Professional/Technical: 1,690
  • Total Full-time Employees: 5,186
  • Field Divisions: 25
Cases:
 
ATF closed 8,525 cases that had been recommended for prosecution in 2016 or a previous fiscal year.  
  • Recommended for prosecution: 8,805
  • Indicted cases: 6,357
  • Convicted cases: 5,517
  • Criminal group and gang cases: 841
Defendants:
  • Recommended for prosecution: 14,418
  • Prior Arrests: 121,925 or an average of 8.5 prior arrests per defendant recommended for prosecution.
  • Prior Convictions: 31,822 or an average of 2.2 prior convictions per defendant recommended for prosecution.
  • Defendants indicted: 10,179
  • Number convicted: 8,007
  • Received life sentence: 23
  • Received death sentences: 4
In fiscal year 2016 case and defendant data presents a snapshot in time of matters proceeding through the various phases of the judicial process.  The typical ATF case recommended for prosecution remains open over a period of approximately 4 years.  Cases and defendants indicted, convicted, and sentenced are not subsets of cases and defendants recommended for prosecution in 2016.  The snapshot presents actual judicial activity in the fiscal year regardless of the year the matter was recommended for prosecution. The reader is cautioned not to calculate, for example, “percentage indicted” based upon the presented data as the case indicted may have been presented in a previous fiscal year.
 
Initiated criminal investigations to these specific areas:
  • Number of firearms cases: 31,853
  • Number of arson cases: 2,451
  • Number of explosives cases: 1,044
  • Number of alcohol and tobacco cases: 49
Firearms Licensees:
 
ATF has 137,464 active Federal Firearms Licensees (FFL)
  • Type 01-Dealer: 56,754  
  • Type 02-Pawnbroker: 8,076
  • Type 03-Collector: 57,345
  • Type 06-Manufacturer of Ammunition: 2,481  
  • Type 07-Manufacturer of Firearms: 11,083  
  • Type 08-Importer: 1,105
  • Type 09-Dealer of Destructive Devices: 71
  • Type 10-Manufacturer of Destructive Devices: 332
  • Type 11-Importer of Destructive Devices: 217
Inspections:
 
ATF conducted the following firearm compliance inspections: 9,790
Firearms compliance inspections resulted in the following recommendations[1]:
  • No violations: 4,481(45.8%)
  • Report of violations: 1,283 (13.1%)
  • Warning letter: 1,277 (13.0%)
  • Warning conference: 512 (5.2%)
  • Revocations/Denials: 42 (0.4%)
  • Surrender in Lieu of Revocation: 22 (0.2%) 
  • Other (out of business, etc): 2,173 (22.2%)
Most frequently cited violations:
  • Transferee did not properly complete Section A, F 4473 - 27 CFR 124(c)(1)
  • Failure to timely record entries in bound record (Acquisition and Disposition Book) - 27 CFR 478.125e
  • Failure to complete forms as indicated in instructions (this violation is often cited when the licensee failed to properly complete a form, but there is not a separate regulatory citation addressing the omitted or misdocumented item) - 27 CFR 478.21 (a)-(b)
  • Licensee did not record on F 4473 the date on which NICS was contacted - 27 CFR478.124 (c)(3)(iv)
  • Licensee failed to obtain and/or document purchaser’s Identification document - 27 CFR 478.124(c)(3)(i)
  • Licensee did not sign and date F 4473 - 27 CFR 478.124 (c)(5)
  • Licensee failed to report multiple handgun sales - 27 CFR 478.126a
  • Licensee failed to properly identify firearm on F 4473 - 27 CFR 124(c)(4)
  • Licensee failed to contact NICS and wait stipulated time prior to transfer of firearm - 27 CFR 478.102(a)
  • Licensee disposed of firearm to a person he had reasonable cause to believe was prohibited - 27 CFR 478.99(c)
Number of firearms inventory discrepancies found during compliance inspections:
  • Initial discrepancies: 79,607
  • Final discrepancies (after reconciliation): 10,305
  • Firearms application inspections conducted: 11,518
  • Approved: 9,409
  • Denied, abandoned, withdrawn: 2,109
Explosives Licensees:
 
ATF has 10,016 active explosives licensees and permittees.
 
TYPE

NUMBER

User

6,162
Manufacturer 2,217
Dealer 552
Dealer Black Powder 467
Importer 515
Limited Permit 102
User Limited 1
Total 10,016
 

Most frequent cited violations:

  • Explosives compliance inspections conducted: 4,305
  • Explosives application inspections conducted: 891
Explosive compliance inspections resulted in the following recommendations:
  • No violations: 2,833 (65.8%)
  • Report of violations: 193 (4.5%)
  • Warning letter: 140 (3.3%)
  • Warning conference: 33 (0.8%)
  • Revocations sought: 4 (0.1%)
  • Other (Out of Business, etc): 1,102 (25.6%)
Most frequent cited violations:
  • 27 CFR 555.127 - Failure to maintain an accurate Daily Summary of Magazine Transactions
  • 27 CFR 555.215 - Failure to comply with House Keeping Guidelines
  • 27 CFR 555.57(b) - Failure to timely notify the following changes: Responsible Persons, and Employee Possessors
  • 27 CFR 555.29 - Failure to comply with Storage requirements.
  • 27 CFR 555.125(b)(3) - Records Maintained by Permittees – Failure to enter required information (Date of Acquisition, Name/Brand of Manufacturer, ID marks, etc.)
Imports and National Firearms Act (NFA):
  • NFA registration applications (and transfer applications): 379,410
  • NFA registrations processed (total weapons): 2,538,397
  • NFA making and transfer tax collected: $62,596,150
  • NFA special occupation tax collected: $6,018,106
  • Imports Form 6 non-immigrant alien processed: 7,404
  • Imports Form 6 processed: 7,201
  • Total import permit applications: 14,605
Tracing
 
ATF’s National Tracing Center (NTC) is the only organization authorized to trace U.S. and foreign manufactured firearms for international, Federal, State and local law enforcement agencies. NTC provides critical information that helps domestic and international law enforcement agencies solve firearms crimes, detect firearms trafficking, and track the intrastate, interstate, and international movement of crime guns.
  • NTC processed more than 386,999 trace requests
Certified Fire Investigators (CFI)
 
ATF’s CFIs provide support for fire and arson investigations throughout the entire United States, its territories and other countries. 
  • ATF conducted 2,451 fire and arson investigations
National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN)
 
NIBIN provides federal, state and local law enforcement, forensic science, and prosecutors with an automated ballistic imaging system that will aid their investigations by using digital images of shell casings to link violent crimes involving firearms and subsequently identify firearm users or “trigger pullers.”
  • NIBIN partners have confirmed more than 88,000 NIBIN hits including 9,897 in fiscal year 2016
  • ATF certified more than 900 NIBIN users to use the network
Laboratories
 
In fiscal year 2016, ATF’s laboratories accomplished the following:
  • Received 2,563 requests for analysis and testing
  • Completed analysis on 2,318 forensic cases (FSL)
  • Performed 274 laboratory case testing experiments (FRL)
  • Performed 388 laboratory research testing experiments (FRL)
  • Provided 98 days of expert testimony in the courts
  • Worked 270 days at crime scenes
  • Provided 824 days of training instruction for federal, state and local investigators and examiners
Budget
  • The agency’s FY2016 enacted budget was $1.24 billion.
 
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[1] Numbers provided are for the most notable areas and do not include all items identified by an industry operation investigator during an inspection. 
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