Gun Makers Appeal IN Ruling Against U.S. Curb On Lawsuits


Gun makers are appealing an Indiana judge’s first-of-its-kind ruling that a federal law shielding gun manufacturers from lawsuits is unconstitutional, reports the Indianapolis Star. The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act was passed last year by Congress. It prohibits lawsuits against the gun industry by municipalities and victims seeking damages for gun-related violence. Lake Superior Court Judge Robert Pete ruled that the law is unconstitutional and refused to dismiss a lawsuit by the city of Gary against manufacturers and dealers. Lawrence Keane, senior, general counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, an industry trade association, said Congress has the right to ban the lawsuits. “We believe that the judge’s decision is flawed as a matter of law and constitutional analysis,” Keane said. “We think we’re going to clearly win on appeal.”

The Indiana ruling is likely to have limited effect on cases elsewhere, said law Prof. Ivan Bodensteiner of Valparaiso University. A ruling by a judge in Indiana does not bind a judge in another state. An attorney with the Washington, D.C.-based Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, which is helping represent the city of Gary, said, “It’s gratifying to us that this bill, which was clearly a special-interest payoff to the gun industry and the gun lobby, was struck down by one of the courts that looked at it.”


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