Governor Cuomo: "While the Trump administration tries to put more guns in the hands of criminals and dangerous individuals, New York is taking action to uphold our laws and keep our communities safe"
At Governor's Direction, State Police Issue Notice Reminding New Yorkers that Assault Weapons—Including Those Built by 3D Printers—Are Illegal Under the NY SAFE Act
Governor Cuomo to also Pursue Legislation to Bolster State's Nation-Leading Gun Safety Laws and Outlaw Private Production of All 3D and Ghost Guns
Audio of the Governor's Announcement Is Available Here
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a series of actions to prevent the distribution of dangerous 3D gun plans that allow individuals to cheaply create functioning and untraceable firearms, including weapons that are illegal in New York State. First, the Governor issued a cease and desist letter to Defense Distributed to block the distribution of plans for 3D guns in New York State after the Trump administration allowed unchecked distribution of the plans. Second, the Governor directed State Police to issue a notice reminding New Yorkers that manufacturing assault weapons—including with 3D printers—is illegal in New York. Third, the Governor announced the he would pursue legislation to bolster the state's nation-leading gun safety laws and outlaw private production of all 3D and so-called ghost guns that are untraceable and invisible to metal detectors.
"While the Trump administration tries to put more guns in the hands of criminals and dangerous individuals, New York is taking action to uphold our laws and keep our communities safe," Governor Cuomo said. "As the nation rises up and calls for action against gun violence, it is absurd and frightening that the federal government wants to make accessing an automatic weapon as easy as hitting print. New York is proud to have the strongest gun safety laws in the nation, and we won't let this federal government take us backwards."
"There is a plague of gun violence in this nation that is tearing families apart across the country every day," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "While the federal government has failed to take action against gun violence, in New York we are saying enough is enough. The Trump administration is planning to allow the distribution of 3D guns starting tomorrow. We will not tolerate any step backwards in our progress to protect New Yorkers. New York is seeking to block the distribution of 3D guns and outlaw the production of 3D guns in the state. We will continue to fight back against policies that threaten the lives of New Yorkers."
Issuing Cease and Desist Letter
The Trump administration reached a settlement with Defense Distributed in June allowing the organization to publish plans, files and 3-D drawings of guns beginning August 1 that can be used to create functioning weapons. The settlement reversed the position of the previous federal administration, which banned the distribution of such content.
Governor Cuomo issued a cease and desist letter to Defense Distributed, threatening legal action if the organization makes it available in New York. The Governor is demanding that the organization restrict accessibility of its site in New York to prevent New York residents from obtaining the files.
New York has also joined other states to sue the Trump administration for reversing course and creating this significant public safety risk.
Notice Reminding New Yorkers that Assault Weapons Are Illegal in New York
Governor Cuomo also directed State Police Superintendent George P. Beach II to issue a notice reminding New Yorkers that it is illegal in New York for a person who is not a licensed gunsmith to manufacture assault weapons, including with 3D printers. Additionally, the possession of an assault weapon is a separate felony under New York State Law pursuant to the NY SAFE Act, which Governor Cuomo passed in the wake of the Sandy Hook school shooting.
Moreover, the production of pistols and revolvers is also illegal in the absence of a license to own one. Even a valid pistol permit does not in and of itself authorize an individual to possess a 3D-printed pistol or revolver, since there is no guarantee that a local firearms licensing officer will allow a 3D-printed pistol or revolver to be registered on a pistol license.
The notice will be posted on the New York State Police website here.
Advancing Legislation to Bolster New York's Nation-Leading Gun Safety Laws
The Governor also announced that he will advance new legislation in the upcoming legislative session to strengthen New York's nation-leading gun safety laws by outlawing the private production of all 3D and so-called ghost guns that are untraceable and invisible to metal detectors.
Under Governor Cuomo, New York has passed the strongest gun control laws in the nation, including the SAFE Act which keeps guns out of the hands of convicted felons and the dangerous mentally ill, ensures private gun sales are subject to a background check, bans high-capacity magazines and assault weapons, and toughens criminal penalties for illegal gun use.
The Governor also recently enacted a law targeting the well-known link between domestic abuse and deadly gun violence. The Governor has also championed evidence-based gun violence reduction efforts which have received national recognition, such as the Gun Involved Violence Elimination (GIVE) initiative and SNUG program, which together work to support both law enforcement agencies and community-based organizations in the prevention of shootings and homicides involving firearms. The GIVE initiative provides funding to support technical assistance, training, equipment, and personnel - such as prosecutors and crime analysts - to help local law enforcement agencies reduce gun violence in the 17 counties outside of New York City that experience the majority of violent crime. The SNUG program provides funding and training for community-based organizations that manage street outreach programs in 11 communities where individuals disrupt the cycle of gun violence by responding when disputes escalate within their community and connecting high-risk individuals with essential social and support services.
In addition to continued progress to New York's gun laws and efforts, Governor Cuomo led the creation of the "States for Gun Safety" coalition earlier this year to combat the gun violence epidemic in the face of continued federal inaction. Together with New Jersey, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, New York State entered into an agreement to trace and intercept illegal guns, better share information on individuals prohibited from buying or owning firearms, and create the first-in-the-nation regional gun violence research consortium. Massachusetts, Delaware, and Puerto Rico have also joined the coalition, which now represents over 35 million Americans.
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