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New York Attorney General Letitia James has filed a motion for a preliminary injunction against 10 national gun distributors, demanding that they immediately stop selling and shipping illegal unfinished and/or unserialized frames and receivers, or “ghost gun” parts, to New York consumers. James is asking a federal court to order these businesses to immediately stop selling, shipping, distributing or supplying unfinished frames or receivers to any person or entity with a New York address.
Thus action, the AG’s team said, “builds on the lawsuit that Attorney General James filed against these companies in June 2022, and is part of the Office of the Attorney General’s (OAG) ongoing efforts to stop the flow of illegal and dangerous ghost guns into New York.”
James said, “Companies that sell ghost gun parts and kits present a clear danger to all New Yorkers. These deadly weapons are unregistered, untraceable, and do not require any background check to purchase, which means they can easily end up in dangerous hands.
“Once again, we are taking action to stop the flow of ghost guns into New York and to protect our communities from gun violence.”
James is seeking a preliminary injunction against 10 national gun distributors that were named in her lawsuit filed in June 2022 that “unlawfully sold tens of thousands of unfinished frames and receivers to New Yorkers violating several laws, including New York’s licensing laws, by selling weapons to felons and others without a background check.”
James’ press release stated, “Between May and June of 2022, six of the 10 defendants – Arm or Ally LLC, Brownells Inc., Salvo Technologies Inc. (a/k/a 80 P Builder or 80P Freedom Co.), Indie Guns LLC, Rainier Arms LLC, and Rock Slide USA LLC – were caught shipping one or more unfinished frames or receivers to undercover investigators in New York, and several defendants advertised ghost gun components for sale and shipped their products to individuals who went on to commit crimes involving ghost guns in New York state.”
This case is pending in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, and James asserts that these businesses sell these unfinished firearms with the understanding that their customers will convert them into working weapons and have even offered instructions on how to do so.
James’ press release stated, “They routinely sell their products inside a ‘jig,’ a plastic structure that guides the user’s tools through the simple steps required to finish the frame. By Defendant 80 Percent Arms’ own admission, the jigs ‘make it ridiculously easy for a non-machinist to finish their [handgun frame] in under 1 hour with no drill press required.’ This process is designed to work around federal gun serialization, recordkeeping, and background check requirements. Once turned into a working firearm, these illegal weapons have been used to commit crimes and harm New Yorkers.”
This litigation is led by Special Counsel James Thompson, Special Counsel Monica Hanna, assistant attorneys general Abigail Katowitz and Matthew Conrad, with support from Data Scientist Kenneth Morales, Director of Research and Analytics Jonathan Werberg, all under the supervision of First Deputy Attorney General Jennifer Levy. The investigation was conducted by investigators Chad Shelmidine, Peter Schottenfeld and Paul Matthews, all under the supervision of Deputy Chief Investigator Jonathan Wood and Deputy Chief Investigator Edward Carrasco.