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Notorious Ninth Circuit At It Again

Friday, June 4, 2004

Apparently, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is determined to maintain its paradigm of dispensing political activism under the guise of unbiased legal judgement.

Last fall, a three-judge panel of the San Francisco-based court reinstated a wrongful death lawsuit against the firearm industry that had been previously tossed out by a Los Angeles federal judge before it went to trial. The suit, Ileto v. Glock, seeks to blame Glock and others for the horrendous criminal actions of deranged white supremacist Buford Furrow. In 1999, Furrow shot and killed postal worker Joseph Ileto, and wounded three children at a Jewish Community Center in Grenada Hills, California, after illegally acquiring firearms. What is not often reported is that, while a Glock pistol was used in Furrow`s heinous crime, the gun was originally sold to a police department, which subsequently sold it to a licensed dealer, who in turn sold it to a collector, who finally sold it to Furrow. Glock is being targeted but did nothing illegal.

Following last fall`s decision, Glock asked that the full court reconsider the ruling. Last week, the full court voted to allow the suit to proceed. Significantly, eight of the judges dissented. In writing the dissent, Judge Consuelo Callahan said, "The potential impact of the panel`s decision is staggering. Any manufacturer of an arguably dangerous product that finds its way into California can be hauled into court in California to defend against a civil action brought by a victim of the criminal use of that product." Drawing an obvious conclusion, Judge Callahan went on to say, "Thus, General Motors would be sued by someone who was hit by a Corvette that had been stolen by a juvenile."

This case dramatically underscores the urgent need for passage of a comprehensive federal lawsuit protection bill. Allowing these types of suits to continue unabated will be disastrous for the American firearm industry, and for your right to lawfully own firearms. That is why NRA-ILA remains committed to enacting a federal lawsuit preemption law that does not in any way compromise our Second Amendment rights.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.