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Possession of a Silencer (PC 33410) Laws in California

PC 33410: Possession of a Silencer

Legal Definition: “Any person, firm, or corporation who within this state possesses a silencer is guilty of a felony and upon conviction thereof shall be punished…”

To establish the occurrence of the enhancement under PC 33410, the prosecution needs to provide evidence of the following:

  • Your possession of a firearm
  • The presence of an attached silencer on that firearm

What does this mean?

As an experienced authority in this matter, rest assured that these criteria will be rigorously examined and addressed. Trust in our expertise to navigate the complexities of the case.

A silencer, commonly known by its name, is a firearm attachment that serves to reduce or eliminate the sound produced when the gun is discharged. Often employed in cinematic contexts to depict discreet acts of violence, silencers are purpose-built devices that allow the weapon to be fired silently, preventing bystanders from detecting a potential criminal act. It is important to note that possession of a silencer, rather than its usage on a firearm, can result in legal repercussions. For instance, if you are pulled over for speeding or arrested for driving with a suspended license under VC 14601.1(a), and law enforcement discovers a silencer in your possession, you may find yourself facing more severe legal consequences simply for having it.

However, it is worth noting that certain exceptions exist under PC 33415, wherein the possession, purchase, or sale of silencers is lawful in specific circumstances, such as:

(a) Agencies listed in Section 830.1, military forces of this state or the United States, possessing or procuring silencers for official duty purposes.
(b) Full-time, salaried peace officers employed by agencies listed in Section 830.1, or military forces of this state or the United States, utilizing silencers within their official duties with proper authorization from their respective agencies.
(c) Licensed dealers or manufacturers registered under Chapter 53 (commencing with Section 5801) of Title 26 of the United States Code and its accompanying regulations when engaging in the manufacture, possession, transportation, sale, or transfer of silencers to entities specified in subdivision (a).

It is crucial to understand and adhere to the applicable laws and regulations regarding silencers to avoid any legal complications. Reliable legal counsel should be consulted to obtain precise and up-to-date guidance on this matter.


Being found guilty under PC 33410 is a serious felony offense. It’s important to note that this charge cannot be reduced to a misdemeanor, which has additional implications such as the loss of certain rights like voting and firearm ownership. Furthermore, possession of a firearm in violation of PC 29800 (Possession of a Firearm by a Felon) can result in more severe consequences.

If convicted, potential penalties for this offense include a sentence of up to 16 months, 2 or 3 years in a State Prison, with a minimum required custodial time of at least 50%. However, depending on the specifics of your case and the negotiation skills of your attorney, alternative sentencing options such as Formal Probation may be a possibility.

It’s essential to understand that a conviction may also lead to a fine of up to $10,000 and the forfeiture of the firearm or silencer involved. Although this offense is not considered a strike under California’s Three Strike Law or a Sex offense under PC 290, it can still have implications for your immigration status due to its connection to a firearm.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that a conviction for this felony-only offense could result in the loss of your professional license. It’s crucial to consult with an experienced legal professional to navigate the complexities and potential ramifications of this charge.

Common Defenses

  1. Statute of Limitations
  2. Violation of Rights
  3. Insufficient Evidence
  4. False Accusations

False accusations of possessing a silencer can present grave consequences, jeopardizing your freedom and prized gun collection. Such accusations may arise out of misguided emotion, driven by anger, jealousy, or vengefulness. Offenders might take it upon themselves to contact the authorities, either by fabricating evidence or falsely claiming to have witnessed you in possession of a silencer you never owned. This precarious situation is further complicated for gun enthusiasts who revel in assembling and disassembling firearms as a personal pastime.

Fortunately, there are defenses available to combat these allegations. One such defense revolves around the concept of insufficient evidence to establish guilt. For instance, law enforcement might mistakenly assume that a modification to your firearm resembles a silencer, when in reality, it is not designed or used as such. In the absence of concrete evidence indicating the item qualifies as a silencer, the charge against you can be deemed unsubstantiated, bolstering your defense.

Furthermore, potential issues may arise if your arrest involves a violation of your rights safeguarded by the 4th Amendment. Suppose you are stopped by police solely based on your race, without any probable cause for detention or subsequent arrest. In such a scenario, should a silencer be discovered on your person at a later time, a skillful Criminal Defense Attorney could argue that the stop itself was unlawful. Utilizing a motion under PC 1538.5, they can request the exclusion of the illegally obtained silencer from your case. Consequently, the charge related to silencer possession would likely be dismissed, though it should be noted that this does not preclude potential prosecution or additional charges in your case.

As seasoned professionals with extensive expertise in criminal defense, our firm is dedicated to safeguarding your interests and ensuring that justice is served.

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Being convicted of such a serious offense can lead to profound repercussions, including the potential forfeiture of your freedom and Second Amendment Rights concerning firearm ownership. Recognizing the severe implications of these charges, enlisting the expertise of a seasoned attorney who has a deep understanding of the legal intricacies becomes non-negotiable. Such a legal advocate can tactfully negotiate a dismissal or aim to downgrade the charge to a non-felony, paving the way for a more favorable future.

With a distinguished history of triumphant defenses, our respected Ontario PC 33410 attorney has consistently shown prowess in safeguarding clients from the ramifications of firearm-related charges, precisely those enshrined in PC 33410. Given the urgency, there’s no room for hesitation. Engage with the expertise of the Inland Empire Defense by reaching out at 909-939-7126. Strategically situated in Rancho Cucamonga, we’re poised to fervently champion your defense.

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Our legal services are specifically tailored to residents of Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties. For cases outside these areas, we recommend consulting to find appropriate legal assistance. Our focused approach allows us to provide specialized defense catering to the unique legal landscape of these counties.

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