Designer of 3-D-printed guns asks federal judge to reject New Jersey law

A Texas-based designer of 3-D-printed guns, which set off a national debate over the online publication of instructions to make the weapons, is asking a federal judge in Austin to reject a New Jersey law so it can resume doing business in the state.

Attorneys for Defense Distributed argued Tuesday for a temporary injunction against New Jersey, saying that providing online blueprints to create homemade guns – also known as “ghost guns” because they are untraceable and unregulated – is not unconstitutional.

“I can’t know how someone may use my work,” attorney Josh Blackman said.

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The New Jersey law prohibiting “ghost guns” took effect in July. Defense Distributed filed a lawsuit against the state’s attorney general, Gurbir Grewal, as well as state officials from New York, Delaware, Pennsylvania and California.

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Before a discussion on whether to invalidate the law continues, U.S. District Court judge Robert Pitman will decide whether he has the authority to hear the case from Texas, the Austin American-Statesman reported. Lawyers for the company argue the lawsuit was filed appropriately in Texas because the firm received a letter at its Austin offices ordering it to cease and desist from publishing gun-making instructions in New Jersey.

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“If that’s all they have, which it is, there’s no jurisdiction here,” Casey Low, an Austin antitrust lawyer, who is representing the New Jersey attorney general, told the paper.