On Friday, the Illinois Supreme Court published its opinion in the matter of Illinois v Aguilar striking down the gun law in the state that prohibits carrying firearms. The High Court opined that the law was against the Second Amendment of the US Constitution.
In the instant case, Alberto Aguilar was arrested for criminal conduct not related with guns, but was found in possession of a gun on his person. He was convicted of carrying a firearm.
In striking down Aguilar’s conviction, the Illinois Supreme Court cited US Supreme Court decisions, notably those in D.C. v. Heller and McDonald v. Chicago. The court also observed that in Moore v. Madigan, the Seventh Circuit had held that the Second Amendment right to carry firearms extends to carrying firearms in public and away from home.
The Illinois High Court thus held, that under established precedents, including those of the US Supreme Court and that of the Seventh Circuit, the current gun laws in Illinois were unconstitutional.
However, the court added that the ownership of guns is “subject to meaningful regulation.” Even though, the Illinois legislature has recently passed a new law that allows people to carry firearms under restrictions, the court noted that the new law does not apply to the instant case as it is yet to come into effect.
Right now, the new gun law in Illinois will come into effect next year, but the current law, as far as it prohibits carrying firearms, has been declared unconstitutional.
While rejecting the state’s objection to the defendant’s challenge of his conviction as depriving him of his rights under the Second Amendment, the court observed, “If anyone has standing to challenge the validity of these sections [the sections in the defendant was convicted under] it is defendant. Or to put it another way, if defendant does not have standing to challenge the validity of these sections, then no one does.”