Design of AR-15 could derail charges tied to popular rifle

Libertine

Moderator
Apr 2015
16,879
3,429
Katmandu
I can't believe it has taken this long for this to make it through the courts. Our firearms laws are totally misapplied when it comes to modern sporting rifles, and some are totally ridiculous.


DALLAS (AP) — A subtle design feature of the AR-15 rifle has raised a technical legal question that is derailing cases against people who are charged with illegally buying and selling the gun's parts or building the weapon.

At issue is whether a key piece of one of America's most popular firearms meets the definition of a gun that prosecutors have long relied on.

But some defense attorneys have recently argued that the part alone does not meet the definition in the law. Federal law enforcement officials, who have long been concerned about the discrepancy, are increasingly worried that it could hinder some criminal prosecutions and undermine firearms regulations nationwide.

"Now the cat is out of the bag, so I think you’ll see more of this going on,” said Stephen Halbrook, an attorney who has written books on gun law and history. “Basically, the government has gotten away with this for a long time.”