A 3D printed firearm isn’t as simple as it sounds

MilanoMoore1

A judge issued a temporary restraining order against the distribution of materials to make guns using 3-D printers.

Several US states on Monday (July 30) said they would jointly sue the Trump administration for allowing the public to download blueprints for 3-D printable guns in a last-ditch effort to block the designs from becoming available on Wednesday (Aug 1).

The 3D printed technology provides a way to create untraceable guns without serial numbers and without the owner needing a background check, things gun control advocates say are risky.

On Monday, several states-including Washington, New York, and Massachusetts-filed a lawsuit against Defense Distributed, a nonprofit from Texas native Cody Wilson that plans on uploading a whole library of 3D-printed gun designs on August 1.

A federal judge in Seattle issued a restraining order, which temporarily stopped the release of blueprints to make 3D-printed plastic guns.

In a tweet Tuesday morning, Trump said he is "looking into" his administration's decision to clear the way for Wilson's actions.

Before the decision, President Donald Trump said 3D-printed guns "doesn't seem to make much sense".

Democrats tried to pass a bill Tuesday in the Senate to outlaw the sale of the blueprints and called on President Trump to issue an immediate executive order to stop the blueprints from going live.




"There are 3-D printers in public colleges and public spaces and there is the likelihood of potential irreparable harm", Lasnik said at the end of a one-hour hearing on the lawsuit.

On the company's website, people can download plans to make more advanced guns with metal parts from the comfort of their own home.

Defense Distributed's website said it would publish the files on Wednesday but blueprints for seven guns already were available for download on Tuesday.

Assembling your own gun is legal, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, provided you don't sell it. "As we argued in the suit we filed yesterday, it is - simply - insane to give criminals the tools to build untraceable, undetectable 3-D printed guns at the touch of a button".

But then eight states filed a last-minute lawsuit to stop the release of the information. Fellow Democrat Edward Markey of MA said, "Donald Trump will be totally responsible for every downloadable plastic AR-15 that will be roaming the streets of our country if he does not act today".

The U.S. State Department agreed to a settlement in June after a five-year legal battle that had forced Wilson to remove the online tutorials, by arguing they violated firearm export laws. The single-shot pistol was made nearly entirely out of ABS plastic - the same material Lego bricks are made from - and could be made on a 3D printer.

Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY)-are not so much aimed at 3D printed guns in general as they are toward online files set to be shared by Cody Wilson's Defense Distributed. The company said it has also blocked access to users in New Jersey and Los Angeles.

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