On Tuesday evening, Seattle Federal Judge Robert Lasnik granted the Attorney General's Office's request for a temporary restraining order to stop an American company by the name of Defense Distributed from releasing plans that would allow someone to print a almost all-plastic, single-shot handgun using a 3D printer and a blueprint.
The suit, filed on Monday (Tuesday NZ Time) in Seattle, asked a judge to block the federal government's late-June settlement with Defense Distributed, which allowed the company to make the plans available online.
State Sens. Vincent Hughes, D-Philadelphia, and Wayne Fontana, D-Allegheny, said Wednesday they plan to introduce legislation that would amend the state definition of "firearm" to include 3D printed guns and would prevent people from printing guns unless they have a federal firearm manufacturing license.
Eight Democratic attorneys general, including New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, filed a lawsuit Monday seeking to block the federal government's settlement with Defense Distributed that makes the plans available online.
Still, Mittow says many 3D printers, even ones that run a couple thousand dollars, would be capable of making plastic guns.
"Republicans say they want to keep guns out of the hands of violent criminals, with this settlement, violent criminals can manufacture firearms". Cody Wilson, the founder of a company called Defend Distributed that has published the blueprints online, told CBS News he believes "access to firearms is a fundamental human dignity. I will be arguing to protect my client's First Amendment rights", he said on Tuesday.
Gun safety advocates hailed Tuesday's decision as a victory, saying it will protect innocent lives.
A Texas company called Defense Distributed is now fighting a legal battle over publication of plans which would allow gun lovers to print out firearms including a replica of the notorious AR-15 assault rifle, which has been used in a number of mass shootings.More news: Remains of U.S. Soldiers Returning Home From North Korea
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Trump spokesman Hogan Gidley made much the same point, saying the administration supports the law against wholly plastic guns, including those made with a 3D printer.
"It is immediately obvious to anyone who looks at this issue that 3D-printed guns are nothing short of a menace to society, and we are thrilled that the court ruled in this manner", stated Avery Gardiner, co-president of the Brady Campaign.
Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said he was concerned that distribution of the blueprints could allow terrorists and worldwide criminal organizations to manufacture guns that can't be detected. Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, a Democrat, said in a statement.
3D printed guns generally fall apart after a couple of shots. A follow-up hearing will be held August 10.
"We're disappointed", Wilson told The New York Times.
It would have allowed anyone with access to a printer to potentially build a lethal weapon, which opponents say can not be seen by a metal detector or tracked to a licence holder.