Statewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Office

Statewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Office

The Statewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Office is a first-in-the-nation office with the specific mandate of bringing civil enforcement actions against firearm companies to hold them accountable for violations of the law that harm the health and safety of New Jersey residents. An essential component of SAFE’s civil enforcement toolbox is New Jersey’s recently enacted firearms public nuisance legislation (P.L.2022, c.56) signed by Governor Murphy on July 5, 2022, which authorizes the Attorney General to bring lawsuits against gun industry members that contribute to a public nuisance in New Jersey through unlawful or unreasonable conduct, or that fail to maintain reasonable controls, relating to their sale, manufacturing, distribution, importing, or marketing of gun-related products. SAFE’s work advances the essential work of the Department to combat the epidemic of gun violence and to keep New Jersey residents safe.
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PRESS RELEASES

AG Platkin Finds Microstamping Technology Viable for Use in Commercial Firearms Following Live-Fire Testing

Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin today announced that, based on both live-fire testing results and existing peer-reviewed studies, microstamping technology is a viable means of matching an expended cartridge case to the weapon from which it was discharged.

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Governor Murphy, AG Platkin: Brady Report Shows Our Gun Laws Are Working

Governor Phil Murphy and Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin today hailed a new national report from Brady showing that, for two years in a row, none of New Jersey’s firearms dealers were cited by the federal government for selling the most crime guns, a typical indicator of gun violence and gun trafficking.

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Attorney General Platkin Files Civil Complaints Against Pennsylvania Gun Show Company, New Jersey Gun Dealer Under NJ Public Nuisance Law

Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin today announced the filing of civil complaints via New Jersey’s Statewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Office against a New Jersey licensed gun dealer and two Pennsylvania-based gun companies.

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AG Platkin Announces Adoption of Standards and Processes for Microstamping-Enabled Firearms Roster

For Immediate Release: August 22, 2023 Office of the Attorney General- Matthew J. Platkin, Attorney GeneralStatewide Affirmative Firearms Enforcement Office- Ravi Ramanathan, Director  For Further Information: Media Inquiries-OAGpress@njoag.govMicrostamping...

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HIGHLIGHTS

2023 Highlights

  • In its first enforcement actions, SAFE filed two groundbreaking lawsuits against members of the gun industry in December 2023. The first lawsuit seeks damages, costs, and injunctive relief from FSS Armory, a New Jersey licensed gun dealer in Pine Brook. As alleged in the lawsuit, FSS Armory failed to properly store its guns in violation of state law, which requires that guns be secured overnight and that they not be stored in any window or adjacent area where they can be seen from the outside. The company’s failures put residents in New Jersey, as well as those in neighboring states, in danger by allowing the weapons to be trafficked and placed in the hands of criminals and others not legally permitted to own a firearm.
  • SAFE’s second landmark lawsuit, also filed in December 2023, seeks damages, costs, and injunctive relief from gun show operator Eagle Shows and gun show vendor JSD Supply. These defendants targeted the sale of ghost gun products to New Jersey residents. Unserialized, untraceable firearms, commonly known as ghost guns, are illegal in New Jersey. As alleged in the lawsuit, JSD Supply and others nonetheless continue to deliberately sell ghost gun products at Eagle Shows gun shows just across the New Jersey-Pennsylvania border, and Eagle Shows continues to directly advertise their shows in New Jersey.
  • SAFE helped create the Attorney General’s new standards and application process for microstampingenabled handguns to be included on a State roster pursuant to the State’s commercial microstamping law. Under the newly-established standards, which were announced in August 2023, a firearm qualifies for inclusion on the microstamping roster if, among other criteria, it regularly impart an identifying marker on expended cartridge cases, perform without physically deforming or deteriorating when firing rounds and with no less reliability than other commercial firearms sold in New Jersey, and otherwise complies with all applicable State and federal laws.

BIOS

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<h5 style="color:white;">Ravi Ramanathan, Director</h5>
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Ravi Ramanathan is the Director of SAFE.  As SAFE’s inaugural Director, he leads the office’s work combatting gun violence through civil enforcement.  Prior to joining the SAFE Office, Ramanathan served as the Director of Investigations for the New Jersey Office of the State Comptroller, where he led the office’s efforts to detect and uncover waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer funds in state and local governments.  His office also conducted reviews of New Jersey State Police traffic stops and internal affairs processes.  He previously worked in the New York office of Jenner & Block LLP handling criminal and civil enforcement matters, including internal investigations and compliance reviews, federal and state investigations, and monitorships of major financial institutions.  Ramanathan clerked for the Honorable José A. Cabranes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and for the Honorable Denise Cote of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.  He earned his J.D. from Yale Law School and his A.B., magna cum laude, from Brown University.

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<h5 style="color:white;">Jeremy Ershow, Deputy Director</h5>
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Jeremy Ershow is Deputy Director of SAFE. Ershow, of Montclair, is an experienced litigator who has handled high-stakes disputes – including matters involving election integrity and voting rights – at Jenner & Block.  Ershow clerked for the Honorable Julio Fuentes on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals and the Honorable William Yohn Jr. of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. He obtained his J.D. from NYU School of Law and his B.A. from Yale University.