NC AG sues federal government to stop release of 3D printed guns files

North Carolina news

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina’s attorney general joined a federal lawsuit that aims to prevent 3D printed firearm blueprints from being released online.

Attorney General Josh Stein joined the lawsuit by attorneys general from 19 states and the District of Columbia.

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“These 3-D firearm blueprints are just as dangerous now as they were when I first sued to prevent them from becoming publicly available online,” said Stein. “Letting anyone have access to these files, and thus the ability to create undetectable, untraceable guns to hurt others, is a major threat to public safety. I will continue to fight to prevent the federal government from making these blueprints available to anyone and everyone.”

In 2015, Defense Distributed, an online company, sued the Obama administration after being forced by the U.S. State Department to remove instruction manuals on printing 3-D firearm files from the internet.

The federal government successfully argued before federal trial and appellate courts that posting the files online violates firearm export laws and poses a serious threat to national security and public safety.

Then, in an abrupt reversal, the Trump administration settled the case on June 29, 2018. As part of the settlement, the Trump administration agreed to allow unlimited public distribution on the internet of the downloadable files for 3-D printed guns.

The new lawsuit comes after the Trump administration works to transfer the regulation of 3D guns from the U.S. State Department to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

The Trump administration wants the transfer to regulations after a multistate lawsuit in August 2018 successfully prevented the release of the files.

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