World News

Ghost guns: Legal fight heats up over 3D-printed weapons

Ghost guns: Legal fight heats up over 3D-printed weapons

A federal judge temporarily blocked the release of blueprints for 3D-printed guns on Tuesday, only a day before they were supposed to be made public. "Under federal law it would be illegal to build a gun that's undetectable", he said.

The company behind the plans, Defense Distributed, reached an agreement with the federal government in June allowing it to make the plans for the guns available for download, starting this week.

"I am thankful and relieved Judge Lasnik put a nationwide stop to the Trump Administration's unsafe decision to allow downloadable, 3D-printed ghost guns to be distributed online", Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson said. State Department officials said the plans violated US export laws.

President Donald Trump said that he is looking into the situation. Now, Wilson says he wants his website to become the Wikipedia of downloadable weapons.

He successfully argued that the US Constitution's Second Amendment, which guarantees the right to private gun ownership, should extend to a person's right to make guns at home - uncontrolled by authorities, since they will bear no serial number.

A Texas company's plans to post blueprints for 3D printable guns online for the public has been stopped - at least for now, according to the New Jersey attorney general.

The topic of 3D printed guns has been a pretty hot button issue around the world for quite a while, and especially in the USA at this time.

"What I'm doing is legally protected", he said in an interview hours before the injunction was handed down by US District Judge Robert Lasnik.

Attorneys general from eight states and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit to force the Trump administration to stop the sharing of gun plans online. They say anyone following those step-by-step directions could use 3-D printer technology to create a gun out of plastic.

"Once again, my office had to hold this Administration accountable to the rule of law", Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, who filed the lawsuit Monday, said in a statement after the ruling.

The settlement followed a long legal battle between self-described anarchist Cody Wilson, 30, Defense Distributor's founder, and the department.

The settlement, which took gun-control advocates by surprise, allowed Defense Distributed to resume posting blueprints for the hard plastic guns at the end of July. A federal law passed in 1988 - crafted with NRA support - bars the manufacture, sale or possession of an undetectable firearm. Anonymous manufacturers will make guns created to evade security; criminals will easily obtain firearms they aren't allowed to buy; and law-enforcement agents will struggle in vain to trace weapons used in crimes.

Although Defense Distributed was expected to publicise the plans on Wednesday, more than 1,000 people have downloaded the files for building an AR-15 rifle - the same gun used in many of America's mass shootings - since Friday.

The 3D-printed guns files are slated to be uploaded on DEFCAD.com this Wednesday.


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