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Court Rules Files For 3D-Printed Guns Are Free To Be Downloaded By Public Online
By Izza Sofia, 30 Jul 2018
Texas-based Cody Wilson can resume distributing his 3D guns next month, after a court finalized that printable firearms can be made available to access on the internet again, as reported by Dezeen.
After a multi-year lawsuit, courts ruled that blueprints for these firearms can be shared online again, and the founder of Defense Distributed will revive his file-sharing site Defcad for users to download these instructions to form “ghost guns” for free from 1 August 2018. These tutorials state that the handgun, and other weapons can be printed using ABS plastic.
However, Wilson insists that this movement would not lead to an influx of gun users.
Gun culture has already been “quite prolific” on the internet, therefore his movement is “merely formalizing” something that is currently happening. Basically, anyone who wishes to purchase or learn more about guns can just surf the internet as there are large gun forums and information related to it.
Wilson also described the court’s ruling as “unexpected” but it also serves as a “formal confirmation” for Defcad to provide guns on a mainstream level.
Wilson sued the State Department in 2015, after the US government blocked downloads of gun blueprints back in 2013 due to a violation of law called International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).
He cited that his freedom of speech was restrained as he wasn’t distributing actual guns, only computer codes. The State Department was actually presented with a losing case and this can cause suffering of its “degradation of power” under ITAR. Alternatively, it can dropped the case and lift the ban to continue keeping ITAR safe for the next generation.
When the ban was lifted in 29 June 2018, anti-gun activists were disturbed as this would mean anyone is capable of accessing these “ghost guns.” These guns do not come with serial numbers and they also could not be traced.
Senator Chuck Schumer has also demanded the federal government to put the ban back into place as he explained how dangerous it is for people to build a “semi-automatic assault-style weapons” made using a 3D printer and plastic in their own basement.
However, Wilson thinks that these “concerns are unfounded” as it is not as easy to build a gun. He claims that one has to have an interest in manufacturing and fabrication in order to put the file into use. It is not as simple as just downloading it and suddenly a gun appears in front of your eyes.
Wilson first distributed its first 3D-printed handgun in May 2013. Dubbed ‘The Liberator’, the blueprints of the firearms has been downloaded close to 100,000 times before it was forced to be removed by the government.
[via Dezeen, opening image via Defcad]
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