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NY Assembly passes bill banning untraceable DIY firearms known as ‘ghost guns’

The 3D printed .380 handgun, "DD Liberator." (Justin Pickard/Flickr)

Ghost guns could soon be a thing of the past.

The state Assembly passed legislation on Monday that would bar homemade, untraceable weapons often made with plastic parts manufactured by a 3-D printer.

“As rates of gun violence increase across the country, New York continues to lead the way in prevention by passing common sense gun safety legislation,” said Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx). “This bill demonstrates our commitment to keeping our kids and communities safe through thoughtful and comprehensive legislation.”

The bill, which was passed by the Senate last week, would make it illegal to manufacture, sell, transport, or possess firearms or parts that can’t be detected by an X-ray machine.

Ghost guns are considered especially dangerous because they have no serial numbers, allowing criminals to bypass background checks and licensing laws. Plans and parts are readily available for purchase online.

“Our gun laws must be updated to take into account the ever-evolving capabilities of the digital age,” said Assemblyman Tom Abinanti (D-Westchester), the bill’s sponsor. “Today’s technologies permit anyone to make component parts for firearms with materials that can’t be detected by traditional security machines.”

Last year, New Jersey became the second state with a law against ghost guns, behind California.

The bill passed Monday was amended after issues were raised about the initial language, which was overly broad and would have essentially banned any firearm that contained even a single piece of plastic.

The bill now heads to Gov. Cuomo, who will review the amended legislation.

“We obviously support efforts to further strengthen the strongest gun safety laws in the nation, which were advanced by Governor Cuomo, but we need to review the language of this amended bill to make sure it accomplishes it’s stated goal,” said senior Cuomo adviser Rich Azzopardi.


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