Posted Feb 15th, 2022 in Mexico’s Lawsuit Against Gun Makers.
Drug cartels and other criminal groups use guns to protect their people and exert dominance. Recently, a couple of Latin American and Caribbean nations, and thirteen US states have backed Mexico’s lawsuit against American gun manufacturers, accusing them of providing weaponry to drug cartels.
Some of the biggest firearm giants like Smith & Wesson and Sturm, Ruger & Co. (also known as just Ruger) have been accused of trafficking firearms to drug lords. Separate briefs have been field by the US, Barbuda and Antigua urging a federal judge in Boston. The goal is to support Mexico’s $10 billion lawsuit against gun makers.
The gun manufacturers accused in this case counter these allegations by saying that Mexico has failed to establish the threat these companies pose. Moreover, they also defended themselves by saying they are protected by a US law known as the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. They say that according to this law, they are protected, in the event they are charge with product misuse.
Mexican legal authorities felt challenged by the defense that came from the gun manufacturers. They suggest that the law only prevents lawsuits that take place due to injuries, and not the ones that are filed due to the trafficking of firearms to drug cartels.
Democratic attorneys in thirteen states including California, New York and Massachusetts say that despite the fact that it has happened extraterritorially, the will stand by Mexico’s claims, and will not bar them. The representatives of both famous gun manufacturing companies refused to respond when asked for a comment on the United States’ stance regarding Mexico’s lawsuit against gun manufacturers. Among the list of defendants, some of the biggest names to appear include Barrett Firearms, Glock Inc. and Colt’s Manufacturing Company.
A lawsuit was filed in August 2021, which states that Mexico claimed that the companies had undermined its gun laws. They had continued to manufacture, market and supply firearms and military style assault rifles in ways they knew would help arm drug cartels. They also claim that these weapons have been used in kidnappings, murders and different forms of extortions.
According to Mexico’s lawsuit, more than 500,000 firearms are trafficked every year from the US to Mexico. Moreover, the lawsuit also states that 68% of these guns are made by the manufacturers sued. The lawyers in Barbuda and Antigua mentioned that they have witnessed violent guns crimes.
Gun violence, gun right and vigilantism has been a topic of debate for quite some time. However, firearms companies trafficking guns to cartels is just being brought to light in this capacity, and it will take some time before we can conclusively comment over this lawsuit. The sued companies have been around for as long as one can remember, and if tried they won’t sit quietly, nor will the lawmakers in Mexico.