A Liberator pistol appears next to the 3D printer on which its components were made. A federal court ruled Sunday that residents of Pennsylvania will not be permitted to download plans to print these guns on 3D printers. (2013 file photo/Robert MacPherson/AFP/Getty Images)
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A federal court ruled on Sunday that Pennsylvanians will not be legally permitted to download plans to print guns on 3D printers.
What are the details?
On July 10, the U.S. Department of Justice reached a settlement with the Second Amendment Foundation. Under the terms of the agreement, plans for 3D gun parts can be distributed freely online, starting on Wednesday.
The SAF had filed the lawsuit on behalf of Cody Wilson, who had designed a 3D printed gun and published the plans for the gun online. In 2013, the State Department's Office of Defense Trade Controls Compliance ordered Wilson and his organization, Defense Distributed, to immediately stop distributing any plans for guns or gun parts.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, Gov. Tom Wolf (D), and the Pennsylvania State Police filed a lawsuit to prevent Defense Distributed from distributing plans for its 3D printed gun in that state.
In a statement, Shapiro said:
Defense Distributed was promising to distribute guns in Pennsylvania in reckless disregard of the state laws that apply to gun sales and purchases in our Commonwealth. Once these untraceable guns are on our streets and in our schools, we can never get them back. The decision tonight to block Pennsylvania users from downloading these 3D gun files is a victory for public safety and common sense. The company also agreed to not upload any new gun files to its sites, another important development.
Defense Distributed has agreed not to allow its websites to be accessed from Pennsylvania.
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced that he plans to introduce a bill that would make distributing these guns illegal in the entire country. Schumer took issue with the guns not just because they could be downloaded by anyone, but because they were made out of plastic polymers and wouldn't be detected be a metal detector (the bullets and firing pin would be, but not the main portion of the gun).
“People want to cause havoc at stadiums or airports, or anywhere there's metal detectors can get hold of these,” Schumer said. “Without any checking, because all you do is go online, buy the kit, and you can make it. That's gotta stop, and it's gotta stop now. ”
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