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Mexican Valmet

308 Caliber Valmet AK Rifle in Mexico
Finnish Made, US Imported , 308 caliber, AK Rifle in Mexico.

Usually when you see pictures of guns in Mexico, it’s from news report or a NGO discussing the drug war. All of which is apropos. 

However…The Other Side of the Story

I do hear occasionally from private individual gun owners in Mexico. Almost without fail, they are asking questions about historical or rare firearms. But what popped into my inbox this week was different. 

308 Caliber Valmet AK Rifle in Mexico
Mexican Valmet Stock Folded.

What the guy has is a honest to goodness Finnish made, Valmet AK pattern of rifle chambered in 308. But here’s the kicker: It has no magazine. The owner is aware that Galil mags are a thing on some Valmets. So he is looking for some advice on obtaining either a factory Valmet mag or a Galil mag he can modify. 

In talking, I believe he is a private individual. He explained how he got the Valmet in a trade and who this person was. Also looking at the rest of his collection, I can see a collector’s interest. 

308 Caliber Valmet AK Rifle in Mexico
Valmet maker’s mark.

As for sourcing a mag in Mexico? I told him the only legit way I could think of would be to contact the Mexican Army run gun store in Mexico City. Not surprisingly he explained why that is not optimal. 

Logic & Ethics

For our American readers, let’s talk this out a bit. The Valmet pictured was obviously imported into the United States since it has US 68 GCA import marks on it. Also…it’s highly doubtful that a 308 Valmet was taken out of US circulation and sent to Mexico via a government to government program. 

308 Caliber Valmet AK Rifle in Mexico
US Import marks per the 1968 GCA regulations.

So…that leaves us with a few distasteful alternatives. But before we get all high and mighty, let’s keep the thinking based in reality. 

The Valmet regardless of where it came from…lives in Mexico now. And it’s likely never coming back into the United States. Should the Mexican government officially interface with it? The Valmet would likely either end up in the private collection of a government official or be destroyed. 

308 Caliber Valmet AK Rifle in Mexico
Caliber and serial number markings.

Additionally…while owning these types of weapons in Mexico is illegal for civilians, the county is awash in them. So are we Americans so naive as to believe there isn’t black-market, non-criminal gunowners in Mexico? And anywhere there is a market? There is a stratification in said market. More valuable. Less valuable, etc. I.e. Collectors. 

So just like there are guns in Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, California, New York, etc that were never turned into the government? Why should Mexico be any different? Not every gun in Mexico is in the hands of some cartel. 

Many are in the hands of private citizens. Good people. Folks who keep their heads down and their noses clean. Never hurting anyone. If I lived in Mexico, I sure as hell wouldn’t be the one guy on the block without any firearms. 

308 Caliber Valmet AK Rifle in Mexico
Finnish Made, US Imported , 308 caliber, AK Rifle in Mexico.

So…after reading this, do you still think Mexicans can only own non-military caliber, sporting arms? If you do, I have a port to sell you called Vera Cruz. 






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