Is it legal for civilians to own guns in Puerto Vallarta?

Guns and Mexico
Lately we’ve heard a lot about gun ownership…everywhere. Is it legal for civilians to own guns in Puerto Vallarta? The Mexican Constitution does address this issue; Article 10 is very specific. Firearm laws in Mexico are certainly not as loose and unlimited as the United States but they do provide for a right to bear arms. To possess a gun as an ex-pat is also possible, according to Article 27 of the Mexican Constitution.  You must have a permanent resident visa in order to do so.
You can hunt, which means you can bring in a firearm to Puerto Vallarta on a temporary basis. To do this, you must have a written invitation from a shooting or hunting club in Mexico and the allowance is for a limited time, usually during the specific season of the hunt.
Other than that, any firearm you bear must be licensed in Mexico. This requires completing the request to Sedena for authorization.  Sedena is the government department of the Secretary of Defense, which manages Mexico’s Army and Air Force.
The following requirements are your steps towards applying to Sedena for approval to own a gun in Puerto Vallarta: You must have a certified government-issue copy of your birth certificate (not a photo copy); proof of your legal status in Mexico; proof of residency (CFE/electric bills do the trick); photos; copy of photo ID; a photocopy of your CURP, which is basically your Mexican Social Security Card/Number. If you are buying a long-gun, you will need proof of your active membership in a hunting or shooting club. That’s the easy part.
Next you will need to travel from Puerto Vallarta to Mexico City because that’s where the only gun store is, in all of Mexico. DCAM (The Department of Commercialization and Armament and Munitions) is government-owned and operated. It’s not easy to find citizens in Mexico City who can guide you there because most are unaware of its location and existence. You may buy one gun. Pistols and revolvers are allowed for home protection. There are no 9 mm’s, Commandos, Magnums or other large calibers. DCAM has a website you can peruse.
It is possible to own up to ten guns but they must be long guns for the exception of one handgun of .22 caliber and active membership in the afore mentioned club is absolutely required.
If you pass all the requirements, the only place you will be allowed to have your gun is in your home. Illegal carry of a firearm in Puerto Vallarta is enforced and can get you deported, along with indictment and severe sentencing. All guns, whether sport of defense, require carrying permits, even if you’re simply going to target practice. Possession of a permit will include a medical exam, psychological exam and drug test. Of 123 million people in Mexico, there are approximately 3,000 carry permits in issue, so good luck with that, considering many of those permits belong to police and security officers.
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Thanks to our guest blogger Adam Garcia for this article!

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