In a lawsuit supported by the Everytown Law, the cities of Syracuse, San Jose, Chicago, and Columbia, SC have sued the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives over 80% receivers. Of course, they characterize them as “ghost guns” and not semi-finished lumps of metal or polymer.
BATFE is accused of failing to follow the Gun Control Act of 1968.
Defendants ATF and United States Department of Justice (“DOJ”) refuse to apply the clear terms of the Gun Control Act. That federal law defines regulated “firearms” to include not only operable weapons but also their core building blocks—frames for pistols, and receivers for long guns—so long as those core building blocks are designed to be or may be readily converted into operable weapons. See 18 U.S.C. § 921(a)(3). Notwithstanding that statutory language, Defendants have declined to regulate unfinished ghost gun frames and receivers as “firearms,” even though they are designed to be and may be readily converted into
Instead, Defendants have issued rules and letter determinations—continuing to this day—giving the green light to the unregulated sale of unfinished ghost gun frames and receivers.
The cities and Everytown are seeking an injunction and a declaratory relief in the Federal lawsuit brought in the Southern District of New York. They want any and all determination letters set aside.
The Everytown press release makes these assertions:
A ghost gun is a do-it-yourself, homemade gun made from easy-to-get, building blocks that are unregulated under the ATF’s current interpretation of federal law. These guns are finished by an individual, not a federally licensed manufacturer or importer. Ghost guns are one of the fastest-growing gun safety problems facing our country.
The ATF’s current interpretation of federal law — which the lawsuit seeks to have set aside as unlawful — allows people who can’t legally own a firearm to easily buy the parts for a ghost gun. In only a few hours, these self-made weapons become fully functioning, untraceable firearms. A person can buy the parts and assemble a ghost gun without even receiving a background check.
Research by Everytown shows ghost guns are becoming a weapon of choice for people with felony convictions, gun traffickers, and other people legally prohibited from owning guns.
I call BS on the assertion that “ghost guns” are the weapon of choice of criminals. Stolen guns and guns obtained through illegal straw purchases are much more likely to be found in the hands of a criminal than a completed Glock-ish Polymer80.
Former BATFE technical expert Rick Vasquez had this to say in a Reuters report:
But Rick Vasquez, a Virginia-based firearms consultant and former ATF technical expert who evaluated guns and gun products to help the bureau determine if they were legal, said anyone wanting to address the proliferation of kit guns should pass new laws in Congress.
There is no word if Everytown Law intends to demand that the plumbing department of Lowes, Home Depot, and Menards now be required to have a FFL. As Tam has always said, they are selling 90% Sten guns.