A USA judge has temporarily blocked the online publication of blueprints for 3D-printed firearms, in a last-ditch effort to stop a settlement President Donald Trump's administration had reached with the company releasing the digital documents.
The president responded through Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley, who told reporters: "In the United States, it's now illegal to own or make a wholly plastic gun of any kind, including those made on a 3D printer".
However, according to the Associated Press, around 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, a Federal judged issued a temporary restraining order to stop the release of the blueprints online.
In June, Defense Distributed reached a settlement with the federal government allowing it to make the plans for the guns available for download on Wednesday. The guns are made of a hard plastic and are simple to assemble, easy to hide and difficult to trace.
Late Tuesday, dozens of Democratic senators introduced legislation to prohibit the publication of 3D-printable firearm designs, a move gun control groups applauded.
LARGEY: Well, it's hard to tell because, yeah, in 2013, Cody Wilson, the guy who founded Defense Distributed - he posted the plans for this single-shot 3D-printed pistol on the Internet, and it's been online kind of ever since.
Although the Austin-based company said it would start allowing downloads on Wednesday, the blueprints for at least one gun have been posted on its website since Friday.
Josh Blackman, a lawyer for Defense Distributed, said the case was not about guns but about protecting the constitutional free speech rights of his client. The United States Supreme Court declined to hear the case. He revealed last month that after a long legal battle, he had settled with the Department of Justice and could now legally share gun models online, citing his First Amendment right to share information. State Department officials said the plans violated US export laws.
"I am looking into 3-D Plastic Guns being sold to the public", the president said.
What just happened? A federal judge has sided with several states by temporarily blocking the posting of blueprints that enable people to create 3D-printed firearms.
Judge Robert S. Lasnik in Seattle agreed with the states and issued a restraining order.
Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed the lawsuit Tuesday jointly with the AGs of Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia.
In the meantime, congressional Democrats have urged Donald Trump to reverse the decision to let Defense Distributed publish the plans.
These points are both true, but those on the other side of the debate point out that it is already legal to make a firearm for personal use. Models for the AR-15, the second-most popular firearm, had been downloaded more than 3,000 times. Wilson sued in 2015, claiming the order infringed on his constitutional rights. The worry is, that they're unregistered and therefore undetectable.