NEW YORK — Weeks after the shooting in Tucson, sellers at an Arizona gun show allowed undercover investigators hired by New York City to buy semiautomatic pistols even after they said they probably could not pass a background check, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said yesterday.
“After Tucson, you would think that people, particularly at a gun show in Arizona, would have been much more careful in enforcing the law,’’ he said. “That unfortunately . . . wasn’t the case.’’
In the aftermath of the shooting Jan. 8 that killed six people and critically wounded Representative Gabrielle Giffords, the mayor was questioned about the time and place of his hidden-camera investigation, a $100,000 operation similar to others he has authorized.
The operators of the Phoenix gun show where the investigators made their buys on Jan. 23 issued a statement yesterday saying all exhibitors are required to follow state and federal gun laws.
“Mayor Bloomberg and his ‘task force’ have no legal authority in the state of Arizona, or in any other place in America except New York City,’’ said the statement from the Crossroads of the West Gun Shows.
The private investigators, wearing concealed cameras, were sold 9mm guns even after telling two separate sellers they probably could not pass background checks.