Oregon Joins Multistate Lawsuit to Block 3D-Guns

July 31, 2018
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Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum today joined a multistate lawsuit against the U.S. Department of State seeking to block the Trump Administration’s recent action that will allow downloadable 3D-printed gun tutorials to be available online. The lawsuit asks the court for an immediate nationwide temporary restraining order barring the federal government from making rule changes that will allow 3D gun tutorials to be available online.

The lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, argues the federal government’s settlement with Defense Distributed, an organization dedicated to global distribution of open-source, downloadable 3D-printed guns, violates the Administrative Procedure Act and the Tenth Amendment. 

Oregon also joined 21 state attorneys general in a letter to urge U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to immediately withdraw from the settlement because of the reckless disregard to public safety that 3D-guns creates. Once created, 3D-printed guns are nearly untraceable.

“What kind of world are we living in where a criminal, terrorist, or anybody with access to the internet and a 3D printer can build a gun?” said AG Rosenblum. “Once these tutorials to build 3D-guns are unblocked, there is no turning back.  This action has been taken in utter disregard for public safety and I will not stand for it!” 

In 2015, Defense Distributed, sued the federal government after the U.S. State Department forced the removal of the instruction manuals from the internet. The federal government successfully argued that the manuals violate firearm export laws. However, in an abrupt reversal, the federal government settled the case on June 29, 2018. As part of the settlement, the Trump Administration will allow the downloadable guns for unlimited public distribution in any form, allowing anyone with a 3D printer to make these weapons. Defense Distributed announced that on August 1, it would upload the data files to the internet.

This lawsuit is being filed in federal court in Seattle. Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Oregon, Maryland, New York and the District of Columbia joined Washington’s lawsuit.

“These 3D-gun tutorials create an immediate public safety crisis. A gun made from these files is untraceable, undetectable and breaks the law. If the President and his administration won’t keep these off the streets, then state attorneys general will step up and fight for our safety,” said AG Rosenblum.