Minnesota among 20 states fighting against 3D-printed gun blueprints

Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson has filed a lawsuit to block online publication of 3D-printed gun blueprints, joining a coalition of 19 states and the District of Columbia challenging the recent settlement between the Trump administration and Texas-based Defense Distributed.

“Easy online access to 3D-printed guns by criminals, terrorists, or others is a significant public safety risk,” Swanson said in a statement.  “Undetectable and untraceable 3D guns in the wrong hands should concern everyone.” 

The blueprints for 3D-printed guns were released Wednesday, but a federal judge issued a temporary restraining order against their release. Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson first posted the blueprints online five years ago before federal officials blocked the site.

Under the terms of a settlement reached earlier this month, the government is now allowing Wilson to post the 3D-printed gun blueprints online. A federal judge in the state of Washington blocked the release, but only temporarily.

Swanson says state and federal laws prohibit felons and people with mental illness from possessing guns, but the blueprints would give anyone with internet access and a 3D-printer the ability to create 3D-printed guns without serial numbers that are virtually undetectable and untraceable. 

“Once they’re publicized, they can just go off into the air and they can be taken by anybody and everybody, so we want to stop it before that happens,” said Swanson.

The lawsuit filed by Minnesota on Friday seeks an injunction to prevent the publication of 3D-printed gun blueprints online and alleges violations of federal law and the United States Constitution.