Brady Center sues Trump administration over 3D gun blueprints

The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence announced Wednesday it is suing the Trump administration over the State Department’s decision in April to permit blueprints for 3D-printed weapons to be uploaded to the internet.

“When the U.S. State Department in April shockingly reversed its opposition to 3-D guns, which it originally stated would endanger national security, the Brady Center filed a FOIA request with the State Department for documents explaining why it suddenly reversed course. Five months later, with zero response from State, the Brady Center today sued the State Department to force it to produce such documentation,” the group said in a press release.

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The State Department had previously labeled the publication of such blueprints a national security risk, but allowed their publication in April as part of a government settlement with gun rights activists.

“The Trump Administration must explain to the public why it chose to reverse longstanding State Department policy opposing publication of blueprints, and decide to allow terrorists and other dangerous people to make undetectable, untraceable guns with 3-D printers in complete anonymity,” said Kris Brown, president of the Brady Campaign and the Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 

“Instead of making it infinitely easier for the wrong people to get their hands on guns, it’s the government’s responsibility to prevent the inevitable threats to its citizens posed by weapons that can pass through metal detectors in airports, schools, and other public places.”

Nineteen states and Washington, D.C., filed a lawsuit against Defense Distributed, the company seeking the right to publish, and the State Department after the deal was reached, and a federal judge in August upheld a ban on disseminating instructions for 3D-print guns.

Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson claims he has a First Amendment right to publish the instructions, but U.S. District Judge Robert Lasnik wrote that the burdens on Wilson's First Amendment rights “are dwarfed by the irreparable harms the States are likely to suffer if the existing restrictions are withdrawn and that, overall, the public interest strongly supports maintaining the status quo.” 

While the State Department and Wilson have defended their position, President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: 'I will not let Iran have nuclear weapons' Rocket attack hits Baghdad's Green Zone amid escalating tensions: reports Buttigieg on Trump tweets: 'I don't care' MORE tweeted in July that 3D guns don’t “seem to make much sense.”