Injunction Issued Against Ky. Ban On Non-Citizens Carrying Guns

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A federal judge has stopped enforcement of a Kentucky law barring non-citizens from carrying concealed deadly weapons.

The law is written too broadly and violates the rights of attorney Alexander M. Say, a British national who has lived in Kentucky for 15 years, U.S. District Judge Thomas Russell wrote in an eight-page decision Friday.

"Finally, it is in the public interest to prevent the violation of an individual's constitutional rights," Russell wrote.

The American Civil Liberties Union sued the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department and Kentucky State Police on behalf of Say in July, challenging the citizenship requirement and saying Kentucky lawmakers should not have passed the law. The sheriff's department and state police are the two entities that would have to approve Say's license application.

Say argued that no federal law requires U.S. citizenship for people to be licensed to purchase, carry, transport or carry a concealed deadly weapon, and neither should state law.

Prior to the adoption of the law, Kentucky didn't require a check to see if the applicant was an illegal alien. The sheriff's department and state police argued that the intent of the law was to allow an applicant to buy a firearm without undergoing a telephone check with the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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