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Selling Gold In Houston Now Requires Fingerprinting And Mug Shot

February 13, 2013 by  

Selling Gold In Houston Now Requires Fingerprinting And Mug Shot

Those selling precious metals in Houston are now considered criminals until they prove otherwise. That is essentially the crux of a bill passed by the city council requiring gold-buying businesses to photograph and fingerprint those bringing in gold to sell, photograph the items being sold and create an online database of the transactions.

Houston Police Officer Rick Barajas told the council the bill is “going to allow us the tools necessary to combat a lot of high-end jewelry thefts that going on in the city, whether it’s robberies or burglaries.” But Councilwoman Helena Brown — the only councilor to vote against the ordinance — rightfully called it “safety theater” that would burden businesses and invade jewelry sellers’ privacy.

The ordinance was passed in response to an increase in the monetary losses that reached $10,000 in jewelry in 4,800 burglaries from July 2010 to June 2011.

“Why even ask the legal, law-abiding people to submit to this? It’s not going to prevent crime and it’s not going to solve any crimes,” Brown said. “It’s ludicrous. We’ve gone way beyond what our Founding Fathers envisioned for this nation.”

She’s right. Like requiring gun owners to register their guns or get permits, laws like this affect only those who are willing to follow the law. Criminals will find other ways to dispose of their stolen gold and silver. The only people who will submit to photography and fingerprinting are those who are selling their own gold. And most of those will probably go outside the city in order to conduct their business in private.

The end result of this will be fewer customers for Houston’s gold dealers — and a commensurate decline in revenues — and an increase in their cost of doing business. It will also spur the growth of the gold sale black market.

This ordinance is typical of the ignorance of the political class, which always attacks the rights of the innocent rather than addressing the criminal element and working to reduce the number of burglaries.

Bob Livingston

is an ultra-conservative American and author of The Bob Livingston Letter™, founded in 1969. Bob has devoted much of his life to research and the quest for truth on a variety of subjects. Bob specializes in health issues such as nutritional supplements and alternatives to drugs, as well as issues of privacy (both personal and financial), asset protection and the preservation of freedom.

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  • willie lee

    There are other places in Texas to live.

    • Jeanette

      Absolutely correct – Houston has been heading down a liberal/leftist road for a long time now. Those who don’t want to live under a regime that is starting to look like pre WWII Germany had best move elsewhere in the US, while there is still anywhere in the country that DOESN’T resemble it. When you get to the new town, start researching countries that have already been through communism and learned their lesson from it – and move to one of them.

    • Gill O’Teen

      That’s certainly a wise alternative, but if I were a crook not moonlighting as a politician, I would simply fence my loot in Galveston, San Antonio or even DFW, not to mention the numerous smaller towns in that part of the state. Might even make a trade with a mexican drug gang for some AR-15s. Texans better put a stiff watch-out on their guvernator. He is currently recruiting Californian businesses to move to your state. The people owning and employed by these businesses are the same folks who voted for the disaster on the west coast. You want them in Texas? Just consider Houston and assume the bogtan position (bend over grab …).

      • Shane

        Côme on Texas do not mess it up with this b/s with this gold thing. Stop with this, as hey, get out of thé union. Why do you need the u.s.?


        • roberttitle

          There is absolutely nothing, zip, nada in the Constitution that stipulates that a state cannot withdraw (secede) voluntarily from the union…It doesn’t matter one iota what Abe said are what the results of the War of Northern Aggression (Civil War) were. If those in Texas would only “think” and draw up a proposed (not final) draft of the basic elements of a Texas Republic constitution was say, their ranks would swell.

    • Benjamin Fox

      Don’t worry willie lee, the nazi’s are everywhere since hitler took over for another four years, will have everyone on his plantation of all colors and race’s.

  • Robert Smith

    Having had about 30 pounds of copper stolen from a transmitter site, doing thousands of dollars in damage, I’m in favor of having folks trading in metals being identified.

    “Privcy” is an illusion. Our Founding Fathers knew everyone in town, who knew everyone else. Strangers were suspect until the proved themselves.

    It’s a responsibility to know who one is dealing with and for each person to do what they an to uphold society’s ethics and laws.

    Why does the right get all a dither over who loves who, but they are standing in the way of keeping track of thieves and those who shouldn’t own a gun?


    • Thaddeus Toad

      “Societys’ Ethics” What ethics … are you living on the moon… This is the “If it feels good do it “

      • Robert Smith

        My guess is you are speaking for yourself, Thaddeus.


    • Will

      U r a joke Robert! Stifling the truth again…… Hey good for u…… Let’s pass laws that won’t affect the criminals……. Let’s just keep passing them until we don’t have a right to free speech anymore….. At least I won’t have to hear the garbage that comes from u! U r so smart with ur fictitious story and reasons to choke out free will…… U should leave America and travel the world with ur message of hope! Dont come back…… I meant u won’t come back…… Ud be dead or in prison for life for expressing ur opion in most other countries…

    • Jeanette

      “My guess is you are speaking for yourself, Thaddeus.


      Wrong, Rob

    • Gill O’Teen

      “They who would give up an essential liberty for temporary security, deserve neither liberty or security.” Benjamin Franklin

  • Thaddeus Toad

    Once again ….. Stupid People making Stupid Laws…. There is no end to the reasons why this will not work…. Those doing an insurance job on their jewelry will not submit to finger printing and photo just as the guy who robbed the jewelry will not…Most dealers are already required to request photo ID ….

  • ROGER , Irish-Canadian LIBERTARIAN

    Notwithstanding the more inportant issue, the invasion of our rights once again,IF I were a criminal I would simply MELT the Jewellery down to its basic metal,whether it be silver, gold or platinum etc. and separate the jewels and sell everythign that way. I am sure the STATISTS in government know that also, so their motive is obviously not to stop crime BUT to prepare for the day when precious metals are to be confiscated…, just like all of our other assets( houses, guns etc.)…The World cannot be ruled if the population is armed and reasonably wealthy

    Just like Canadians .Americans will give in to this tyranny and when they finally do wake up it will be too late-1000 years of enslvaement is coming

  • Bernie

    More proof Big Brother is taking control of our lives. There needs to be a better way to address the criminal element locally and Nationally. Once that has been accomplished, then Big Brother can back off and let us live our lives. But of course that wont happen. BB is too entrenched In our personal business.

    • Robert Smith

      Yes Bernie, in the sex lives of women, in the sex lives of same sex couples, in the choice of recreational drugs, in the choice of what kind of firearm I own…


      • Steve E

        …and you choice to have health care or not.

  • pete

    Never could understand what all these bills, rules and laws are all about anyway. The criminals are not interested and will always find a way to bypass them. The good folks do not need to be told how to behave and the criminals don’t care so what exactly is the point? Don’t make laws all the time, just take care of the criminals. whoever they may be Make them understand that their extraordinarily bad behaviour will not be tolerated in any way whatsoever. Dump them in a volcano or maybe in the middle of the ocean. There are way too many shitheads on the planet and they spoil it for the good guys – get rid of them, not the good guys. Stop making excuses for their behaviour and wasting time trying to rehabilitate, that sure is a waste of time.

    • sid14

      Many of these “city councils” are staffed with lawyers who don’t know how to do ANYTHING except write more and more laws and are arrogant enough to believe that everyone will abide by them just because its a law, even the criminals. I’m sure they’re quite astonished when thy discover that their laws don’t work. . .

  • Jim

    A blow torch makes a wonderful pile of pure gold…maybe a little dross, but wonderful. Be careful. this sets a precedent that city government has the authority to impose a tracer on legal commercial transactions. What’s next…the mark of the beast in order to buy or sell anything? I hope some smart Christan lawyer attacks this for what it is. An invasion of privacy, that the city is outside its authority and a hidden tax on the business and gold owners without due process of law.

  • Joe

    The gold now goes underground, and smelted never to be seen by them liberal Nazi’s. Have bought and sold for 50 years and now the honest will become criminals because of a bad law.

  • Chester

    From what I read, would make no difference in this town whether the metals were in the form of jewelry, or just pigs. Either way, you have a given amount of precious metal to sell, and the city wants to know who you are and WHY you are selling this metal. For the most part, none of their business, and what little IS their business doesn’t require anything other than a receipt for what you sold.

    • roberttitle

      It’s called Fascism on a local level.

      • Carlucci

        Yep. That’s what happens when the mayor is a big liberal lesbian. She wants to be Obama with lady parts. Naturally the one dissenting voice of Helena Brown on the city council was ridiculed and vilified on the local “news” outlets.

        I live outside the city limits of Houston and will sell precious metals somewhere else.

  • JW

    $10,000 loss in 4800 jewelry burgleries in 11 months ? Thats a loss of $2.08 per burglery, not much is it. Probably one of the Councilmen got hit. I’d suggest beafing up the police force and throwing some criminals in jail. Go after the cause of the problem, not more regulation of honest people.

  • BillT

    Once again, burden the law abiding when the criminal doesn’t give a rats behind.

  • justified

    Won’t everyone simply sell their gold in another city? What possible deterrence or solution is this ordinance? Proves Liberal Californians have migrated to Texas. Beware, these fuzzy thinking “A-holes” will destroy your State. You know a Liberal when you here the sucking sound that occurs whenever they open their mouth. It’s caused by the vacuum that develops in the absence of a brain.

  • Bandofotters

    It sounds like buyers in surrounding towns are in for a windfall. If I were selling gold, even legally, there is no way that I would do it in Houston when the alternatives are near by.

  • Mead Carlson

    This exact thing will happeh very soon with the National Gun/Ammunition registry. Then here comes confiscation. You sell gold for cash, expect a visit from the IRS.

  • ibcamn

    kinda like prohibition,ignorance breeds contempt!these a$$ holes don’t have a clue about what they are doing,their doing what their being told to do,find a way to get information on us,the law abiding people! i lived in Houston for a while,worked out at Purina,dated a dancer that lived around there,lived on the outskirts of town,mostly black residents.i never had a problem with burglary,the cops were always down in that area” looking”for someone and checking ID’s and digging in pockets,and the first thing the police would ask you was,is this yours?!didn’t matter what it was,it was the same question!90% of what they took from your pocket,you never saw again!they knew most would never come to the station to pick it up,if it checks out!!
    Maybe they should check the police to see where they got most of their gold from!i’m sure they are exempt from the law(photo,ID check,print) like so many other things that go on!maybe they think mostly blacks did/doing the robberies!cross reference to mug shots!so they can catch criminals by sitting back and looking at a screen(no footwork involved there)are they that stupid?!
    this is just a way to find out who has what and where to find it!cross reference law abiding citizens names with guns money vehicles political affiliation and who you know!it’s a data base being filled with the gov’ts need to know where your at and to control us,period!

    • roberttitle

      Someone in the independent media or with a sufficient amount of civil responsibility should be standing ready to video these cops (i.e. brown-shirted, jack-booted thugs) in action. Supreme Court has ruled (actually common sense rules) that it is NOT illegal to film such things. If the cops weren’t doing anything wrong to begin with, why would they be disturbed about this?

  • roberttitle

    Sounds like Houston. A police dept. that rivals the LAPD and NYPD and now a rogue City Council.

  • Brad n TX

    Houston Tx, the arm pit of Tx. This city sucks and has always sucked!

  • s c

    Here we go again, America. Utopians, of course won’t remember the many crimes comitted against America by FDR. Now, with FDR II in the W H, we can look forward to seeing gold confiscated – AGAIN.
    So, what does it take to see a gangster/criminal for who he really is? Wasn’t it bad enough that Greenspan dared to call gold a barbaric relic? If you just can’t connect the dots, just say to yourself that what Uncle Scam says and what the old fart does are two different things. Uncle Scam – via Obummer – is shredding the Constitution, mooning every first-rate leader we ever had and can’t understand why anyone would spend any time trying to pull off his many criminal masks.
    Look up the word ‘tyrant,’ and start with Hitler, utopian filth.

  • Ol504Troop

    In 1933, Frankilin Roosevelt passed an executive order forcing all Americans to turn in their gold or face imprisonment and fines. It was a confiscation, citizens were reimbursed the value of their gold in paper. Now Houston wants to create a data base of people who own gold? I would be very careful.

    • Vicki

      The question about FDR is why anyone listened? That was an executive order that only had power over federal government employees.

      • roberttitle

        Executive Orders only have jurisdiction over federal employees? Can you back that statement up?

    • roberttitle

      This city council needs to be recalled ASAP!

  • DantheLibertarian

    So in a free society what would people act like if someone proposed this. they would laugh their asses off and act like it was the BS it is! Soooo Aren’t we free? do we have to comply with every mandate every little puke politician makes? if this a law? do they have the authority to write laws? by whos’ authority?

  • divaofdelicious

    Yes, due process!!

  • http://FB jeff

    I have mixed feelings on this and agree with part of what is being said. In good concious people have been dealing in prescious metals for years including steel, copper, lead,aluminum, and now gold. All this due to an economic downturn in our society. I have in the past always had to be finger printed and show a valid ID photo to sell scrap metal. In our city it has gotten so bad people steal air conditioner units ,aluminum gutters grills ,copper and brass plates from graves. Now jewlry is being stolen and there is not much you can do to track it. I’m not appossed to photo ID’s and finger printing as they have been doing it for I know 15 years here in NC. It has led to the arrest and conviction of a lot of criminals stealing prescious metals. It is sad we have to give such information but allso it is a matter of people selling this stuff and not reporting the cash leaving no trail for tax purposes. It is the same in pawn shops just think if it were your jewlry or guns and you had no way of tracking them. I’ll give up just this little bit to be able to catch those who would steal our wiring right out of our house or what ever else they could sell . I’m a very conservitive republican and know this will slow the theft down as proof here where I live so many AC/heat units were being stolen that you have to have a HVAC license now to sell the copper coils out of these units and the thefts have slowed down. I think we should just focus on our Constitutional rights and know because of bad and dishonest people we may have to give up some of our privacy, a small price considering the loss you just might incur if this were not inacted.Maybe i’m missing the big picture here tell me if i’m wrong. Do I like it NO can I live with it you bet as long as they catch a thief.

    • Dan Mancuso

      I have to assume you are saying this tongue-in-cheek? Because what you have very clearly expressed here is exactly the attitude that has put America into the fascist/socialist state that it finds itself in today, run by tyrants and communists, that is directly responsible for your almost complete loss of liberty and Constitutional rights and protections!
      I.e., giving up a little freedom for a (false) sense of safety.

  • http://midcontent ridge runner

    There isn’t a libertoid communist poster on this site that sees any problems with the hairless,tailess puke and his ba–ardized followers creating lists and taking away our freedoms. These simple azzed pervs think government know best for everyone,and everything that goes on in the USA, but these same book trained, brain dead, smucks can not stp drug sales or usage, gangs, and corruption in government, why because starting with the muslim in the WH, to the lowest slobbering idoit in the Dung Party Because the Dung Party is tied damn tight to these sorry pukes in prison to Wall Street who swallow ththe BS lines..

  • R. Haines

    Does anyone else see a trend beginning? Now it’s gold and in one city. Next it will be other things in other cities.

    This is just the start of eventually requiring a universal ID for purchasing and selling ALL goods and services so the government can keep track of all citizens and what they do.

    There is already a mandate for 2014 that all vehicles have a “black box” for keeping track of every response a driver makes in a vehicle and transponders which relay that info to a centralized location. In other words, your location can be tracked and forwarded to a government agency if requested by “big brother”.

    Freedom is one day going to be a thing of tthe past unless we demand accountability of our government and the elected officials we put in office.

    • Dan Mancuso

      R. Haines;
      You are correct about a “trend”. This is just my observation of things and not scientific, but if you have been following the steady and increasing restrictions on people’s liberty and constitutional protections and rights – outside of the MSM – there is definately an exponetial growth (a bell curve as plotted on a graph) of these incidents and their severity of late! For years, I have ‘seen the end’ just around the corner, but now, this escalation seems to be showing, that the end of life as we know it, really is near at hand. Sacrey!

  • Carol Brink

    Voters elect politicians to take care of government business. Instead, once elected, politicians set themselves as masters and see the voters who they once begged to be elected, as their slaves. They tax, regulate and impose fines to punish and control. Perhaps we should recall all elected officials who lose their way and turn against the citizens. Guess that would include just about all of them.

  • Bob Cody

    This is exactly why the Second Amendment is of extreme importance.

  • Dad

    Those pesky liberal Democrats… Houston, LA, Chicago, NY, Philadelphia…
    How’s that communism working for you now?

    • roberttitle

      Once again folks…let’s get our terms straight so we can debate with the liberals, progressives, et al, in an intelligent manner. It’s FASCISM…the alignment of corporations with the government(s). Communism means the govt. owns all means of production and distribution. Fascism means corporations get to keeps their profits

      and socialize their losses. Fascism entails

      an innumerable amount of govt. controls in the process of converting
      to a police state at home and world military conquest abroad.

      • roberttitle

        BTW, if your are REALLY against communism in the U.S., the best example is our public SCREWL systems (indoctrination centers). Their right in your back home and they entail taxing your homestead which again is communistic…your home is your castle and should be free and clear of liens except for real mortgages. Push for privatization of eduction in a free and open market.

  • Charles

    What is missing is civil methods to include data trails in investigations of criminal acts-perhaps a lost art in police investigations. So asking for helpful evidence is being supplanted by frivolous regulatory mandates criminals learn quickly to avoid


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