Aug 24, 2022 - Politics & Policy

2 ghost gun retailers agree to stop selling parts, kits to New York City residents

Ghost guns are on display during a press conference in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 28, 2020. Photo: Astrid Riecken For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Two ghost gun retailers have reached a settlement with New York City to stop selling parts and kits to residents, NBC News reported.

Driving the news: Rainier Arms, which sells AR-10 and AR-15 rifles online, reached an agreement with the city Wednesday after retailer Rock Slide settled the same public nuisance lawsuit last week.

  • Rainier Arms and Rock Slide USA did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

Details: Rainier Arms agreed to permanently stop selling all unfinished frames or receivers to New York City customers and to remove such products from its online store, according to NBC.

  • It also agreed to hand over documents regarding sales in the city since February 2020.

Why it matters: The Wednesday settlement came the same day a federal ruling went into effect requiring background checks for ghost gun purchasers and for kits to include serial numbers.

The big picture: Ghost guns, which are untraceable firearms that are becoming more prevalent in the U.S., have posed a challenge to law enforcement since they don't have serial numbers, making them difficult to track.

  • President Biden announced the new rule in April to regulate ghost guns and make them harder to obtain.

By the numbers: In 2021, some 20,000 suspected ghost guns were recovered in criminal investigations throughout the U.S. — that's a tenfold increase in just five years, according to government data.

Flashback: Polymer80, one of the largest manufacturers of ghost guns in the U.S., was permanently barred earlier this month from selling unserialized, untraceable firearms to Washington, D.C. residents.

  • The judge in that case also ordered the company to pay more than $4 million in penalties for making false and misleading claims about the legality of its products, according to the D.C. Attorney General's Office.
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