By Kavitha Cardoza
Nearly half of the guns that crossed state lines and were used in crimes in 2009 were sold in just ten states, including Virginia, according to a report being released today by a group of more than 500 mayors from around the country.
The group Mayors Against Illegal Guns is led by Michael Bloomberg of New York and Thomas Menino of Boston. It used data from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to compile its survey, which found the ten states, including Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Texas and Pennsylvania account for nearly 21,000 guns that were connected to crimes in other states.
The report says the ten states have more relaxed gun laws, suggesting that ''criminals and gun traffickers may favor certain states as the sources of guns.''
For example, it says in states that do not require background checks for handgun sales at gun shows, the export rate for guns used in crimes was 2.5 times higher than the rate in states that do require such checks.