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He had an unloaded antique 300-year-old flintlock pistol in his glove compartment, and he told a sheriff’s deputy about it.

That was his undoing.

Gordon van Gilder admits he may have run afoul of the law — but, “as a wise man once said, if that’s the law, the law is an ass.”

The retired teacher is facing a possible 10 years in prison — and the jeopardization of his pension — all because New Jersey state law classifies antique firearms the same way it classifies regular guns, meaning the state views van Gilder’s possession of an antique on par with him possessing a .44 Magnum.