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Over a thousand people have downloaded plans for 3-D printed firearms

August 2, 2018  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Over a thousand people have downloaded plans for 3-D printed firearms

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Over 1,000 people have downloaded designs to make AR-type, 3-D printed firearms — despite a court order prohibiting access until Wednesday.

The office of Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro sent out a news release on Monday announcing the downloads, according to CNN.

“The company, Defense Distributed, had promised that on August 1, ‘the age of the downloadable gun begins,’” Shapiro’s office stated. “Today, the defendants claimed that they began distributing gun files earlier — on Friday. By Sunday, 1,000 people had downloaded 3D plans for AR-15 semi-automatic rifles.”

Shapiro added that the digital gun designs were downloaded over the weekend after a federal hearing took place in Philadelphia, which was spearheaded by the AG.

During the hearing, Defense Distributed agreed to prevent all Pennsylvania IP addresses until Wednesday and claimed they would also stop posting their downloadable plans on the internet.

Josh Blackman, an attorney for the business, verified Monday that over 1,000 individuals had gotten their hands on the weapons plans — but he refused to confirm that it was all downloaded between Friday and Sunday.

“This is a free speech case. This isn’t a gun case,” he said in an interview with CNN. “One state cannot censor the speech of a citizen in another.”

Beginning Wednesday, Americans will be able to download the 3-D printed gun plans legally.

The “public safety controversy” — as Shapiro referred to it — “erupted” after Defense Distributed managed to secure a federal settlement, permitting founder Cody Wilson to distribute the gun plans online.

Wilson had sued the United States government in 2015 after being ordered by State Department officials to remove a series of designs he posted for a 3-D printed pistol, called “The Liberator.”

Attorneys general from over 20 states sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Attorney General Jeff Sessions this week requesting that they remove themselves from the settlement.

“As the chief law enforcement officers, we believe the settlement terms and rules are dangerous and could have an unprecedented impact on public safety,” the letter stated. “In addition to helping arm terrorists and transnational criminals, the settlement would provide another path to gun ownership for people who are prohibited by from possessing firearms.”

Shapiro chose to sue on Monday — along with Governor Tom Wolf and the Pennsylvania State Police — to bar Defense Distributed from legally posting the plans.

Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has also expressed his outrage.

“The danger can be enormous,” Schumer said,

“To have crazy people have access, to have terrorists have access to this kind of website and allow them to make plastic AR-15s undetected — ghost guns — justifies the imagination,” he noted.

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