back arrow iconBack to News

September 7, 2022

Phoenix Campaign Targets Illegal Gun Purchases

NSSF, ATF, DOJ Emphasize ‘Don’t Lie for the Other Guy®

PHOENIX — As part of an ongoing national effort to help prevent illegal “straw” purchases of firearms, NSSF®, The Firearm Industry Trade Association, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) are reminding the Greater Phoenix area public that stiff penalties are in place for individuals convicted of such unlawful purchases. The campaign is in its 22nd year and is a cornerstone of the cooperative relationship between members of the firearm industry and law enforcement.

Don't Lie For the Other GuyBillboard, radio, social media, streaming audio and digital advertisements for the “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy®” program have been purchased by NSSF in key locations throughout the region with the message: “Buy a gun for someone who can’t and buy yourself 15 years in jail. Don’t Lie for the Other Guy.” The month-long public awareness campaign was officially launched today.

The Phoenix area “Don’t Lie” campaign will total more than 44 million gross media impressions, including more than 57 outdoor billboards, digital bulletin boards and posters. There are also more than 460 radio spots playing and 520,000 digital streaming radio service impressions. On social media, “Don’t Lie” advertisements total more than 2 million targeted geofenced online mobile advertisements on Facebook and Instagram impressions. Phoenix was chosen for this special campaign by ATF. No taxpayer dollars are used. The program is funded in full by the firearm industry.

“The firearm industry has always been fully committed to keeping firearms out of the hands of those who should not possess them. We are proud of our more than two-decade cooperative relationship with the ATF, the DOJ and the entire law enforcement community to assist them in their collective efforts to reduce criminal acquisition and misuse of firearms. We’re pleased to work with our partners at DOJ and ATF to launch this “Don’t Lie” campaign in Phoenix this September,” said NSSF President and CEO Joe Bartozzi.

“Don’t Lie” is a cooperative program between ATF, DOJ and NSSF, the trade association for the firearm industry. The effort was developed more than two decades ago to raise public awareness about the seriousness of the crime of purchasing a firearm for someone who cannot legally do so. The program also helps ATF educate firearm retailers to be better prepared to detect and deter potential illegal straw purchases. The public campaign drives home the message that anyone making an illegal firearm purchase faces a stiff federal felony penalty of up to 15 years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines, as well as an additional 15 years in prison if the straw purchase is made with the intent of trafficking across state lines.

To legally purchase a firearm at retail, a person must be able to pass an FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System background check, or NICS check, and fully comply with all state and local laws. When a criminal is illegally trafficking in firearms or knows he or she cannot pass this check, they may try to induce a friend or other person to make the purchase on their behalf. This is known as a straw purchase and is a felony.

This public awareness campaign constitutes only part of the “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” outreach effort. The “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” program also involves educating firearm retailers to better detect and prevent illegal straw purchases. Federal firearms licensees are provided a “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” retailer kit containing a training video and information for storeowners and staff, as well as point-of-purchase displays aimed to deter illegal straw purchases.

Learn more about “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” at


About NSSF
NSSF is the trade association for the firearm industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of thousands of manufacturers, distributors, firearms retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations and publishers nationwide. For more information, visit


Media contact:
Mark Oliva

Share This Article

Categories: BP Item, Featured, Government Relations, Press Releases, Ranges, Retailers, Safety, Top Stories