U.S. Court Rejects New York Gun Lawsuit
The New York Times has reported that a federal appeals court dismissed New York Citys blanket lawsuit against the gun industry on Wednesday, ruling that a relatively new federal law protects gunmakers against third-party litigation.
That law, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, banned all third-party suits against the gun industry except for those in which a plaintiff could prove that gunmakers had violated other state or federal statutes in their sales and marketing practices.
The appellate ruling killed legal efforts by the city to charge gunmakers and distributors with knowingly flooding illicit, underground markets with their weapons.
Mayor Michael R. Bloombergs administration argued that the gun manufacturers, by failing to monitor retail dealers closely enough, allowed guns to end up in the hands of criminals. As a result, the manufacturers created a condition that negatively affects the public health or safety, the city said and, thus, violated New York States public nuisance law.
But the Second Circuit Court of Appeals rejected that argument, ruling that the state nuisance law did not constitute a permissible exception under the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.