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New York AG office argues NRA only filed bankruptcy to avoid oversight

The New York attorney general's office argued in court on Monday that top officials at the National Rifle Association (NRA) declared bankruptcy in January to avoid oversight, saying that the bankruptcy case should be dismissed.

ABC News and Bloomberg reported that Gerrit Pronske, an attorney with Attorney General Letitia James's (D) office, argued that the filing from the NRA is a “poster child of bankruptcy filed in bad faith," and pointed to statements from the organization itself touting its financial health as well as testimony from a board member who said that CEO Wayne LaPierre made the filing without informing the board.

"The NRA clearly and undisputedly had no financial reason to file bankruptcy," Pronske said during virtual hearing before a Dallas federal court. "The NRA is vastly solvent and filing bankruptcy is an abuse of this court's jurisdiction."

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NRA officials have denied that they are guilty of corrupt financial practices, which James has argued in her efforts to dissolve the New York-based organization. In January, LaPierre announced that the NRA would file for bankruptcy and reincorporate in Texas, while making no significant changes to operations.

“The move will enable long-term, sustainable growth and ensure the NRA’s continued success as the nation’s leading advocate for constitutional freedom – free from the toxic political environment of New York,” the NRA said at the time.

The Hill has reached out to the NRA for comment on the attorney general's latest remarks in court.

James initially announced her lawsuit to dissolve the NRA last August, claiming at the time that it illegally "funneled millions" of dollars into the pockets of top executives.

"The NRA is fraught with fraud and abuse, which is why, today, we seek to dissolve the NRA, because no organization is above the law," James said in a statement at the time.