Los Angeles Joins Attack on ‘Ghost Guns,’ Sues Polymer 80 With Help from Everytown

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is suing Polymer80. (Photo: Eric Garcetti Facebook)

The city of Los Angeles has joined Washington, D.C., and several other states and municipalities in suing the “ghost gun” maker Polymer80 for allegedly violating federal and state law. The lawsuit is being supported by Everytown Law, the litigation arm of the anti-gun group, Everytown for Gun Safety.

“Untraceable ghost guns are now the emerging guns of choice across the nation,” Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer said in a press release. “Nobody who could buy a serialized gun and pass a background check would ever need a ghost gun. Yet we allege Polymer80 has made it easy for anyone, including felons, to buy and build weapons that pose a major public safety threat.”

At a press conference announcing the lawsuit, Los Angeles law enforcement officers reported that about 40 percent of the weapons recovered in Los Angeles in 2020 were unserialized firearms, otherwise known as “ghost guns.”

The Los Angeles Police Department seized about 700 ghost guns last year made from Polymer80 parts, and 17 murders or attempted murders have been tied to ghost guns from any company. Los Angles saw over 300 homicides in 2020.

In his suit, Feuer argues that Polymer80 breaks federal law because it sells firearms without conducting background checks on buyers or engraving serial numbers into their products. Even though the ATF has concluded previously that unfinished frames and receivers do not constitute “firearms” under federal law, Feuer says Polymer80 products are firearms because they are “quickly and easily assembled into operable weapons.”

SEE ALSO: Watts Calls for Credit Card Companies to Ban ‘Ghost Gun Kits’ and ‘Core Components’

This “temporal” test defines a firearm based on how quickly a part can be converted into a functioning rifle, handgun, or shotgun. Polymer80 products can be manufactured into firearms by individual users in a relatively short period of time, so they should be considered firearms, according to this argument.

But as the Second Amendment Foundation proved in an amicus brief earlier this year, the federal government and the ATF have consistently defined a firearm by its state of manufacture, not the time it takes to create. Since Polymer80 frames and receivers have not been machined with space for a fire control group, they have not reached the stage of manufacture necessary to constitute firearms—no matter how long it takes to do so.

Furthermore, when Congress defined “firearm” in the Gun Control Act of 1968, it differentiated between “firearms,” which include products that may be “readily converted to expel a projectile,” and “frames or receivers,” which cannot expel a projectile. Los Angeles’s lawsuit conflates “firearms” and “frames and receivers,” the SAF argues, which contradicts congressional intent.

SEE ALSO: Brady United Brings First-of-Their-Kind Lawsuits Against Companies that Sell ‘Ghost Guns’

If Polymer80 is actually manufacturing and shipping firearms, it has also violated California state law, according to Feuer. He alleges that the company is violating state law by “aiding and abetting in the manufacture of handguns that do not comply with safety specifications required under California’s Unsafe Handgun Act, as well as failing to comply with California’s certification and serial number requirements.”

Polymer80’s headquarters were raided by the ATF in December of last year. In the warrant, ATF agents appeared to contradict their previous determinations and claimed Polymer80’s “Buy, Build, Shoot” kids constitute firearms. Agents did not make any arrests and no charges were filed.

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 12 comments… add one }
  • john d braddock February 26, 2021, 6:01 pm

    the first thing a criminal does with a firearm with a serial number affixed is to file it off. wonder how many of these “ghost guns” are confiscated. now that biden is in the gun control crowd is going even more insane. if law abiding citizens do not get progressive liberals out of office at all levels they will destroy the 2nd amendment as well as any part of the constitution they do not agree with. come on folks there are more of us sane people than them, get off your duff gather and vote. otherwise get ready for civil war.

  • kimberpross February 24, 2021, 5:06 pm

    So, from a crime prevention, life saving perspective, what good is a register firearm with a traceable serial number. After the crime, the murder, etc. the police can trace the firearm back to the original purchaser who had it stolen, or sold it to someone else. How did that make me more safe?

  • srsquidizen February 23, 2021, 7:33 am

    A gun you build yourself is perfectly legal for law abiding citizens to own but already illegal for criminals as soon as it is complete enough to be fired. So once again, they need to be going after the criminals who use them in crimes and the illicit gun traffickers who sell them to those criminals with or without serial number.

  • Bad Penguin February 22, 2021, 3:58 pm

    “17 murders or attempted murders have been tied to ghost guns from any company. Los Angles saw over 300 homicides”

    Do those idiot realized the works out to less than 6% of murders are committed by so called ghost guns? Since they weren’t exactly truthful I cant help but wonder how many of these ghost guns were actually guns with their SN completely ground off..

  • Frank February 22, 2021, 12:44 pm

    If the Kameltoe Hoe would stop bailing out violent criminals, perhaps LA and the other communist strongholds could post lower crime stats. Oh… I forgot! They NEED a strong criminal element in society to justify funding the Nanny State.

  • D4w1 February 22, 2021, 6:38 am

    The Polymer 80 builds are no longer avaliable. Now it is the new production of Polymer 79 15/16 builds coming to your stores soon.

  • JB February 19, 2021, 7:35 pm

    This is how the communists work. Spread the idea that homeade guns are evil. Just as they do for all guns. Then they invent a evil name for homemade guns. Oh my. Ghost Guns. They leave out the part that says such guns are legal to make but with specific requirements.

    The communist media amplifies this and the cycle continues. Its done with everything the communists want to control.

    The movement of government over the past centuries has been denied freedoms and denied rights. Bidens regime has chosen the First and Second Amendments to destroy.

    We have choices. Do we want to remain free or not ? If freedom is what we cherish then their is a cost.

    Are we ready to bear the burden ?

  • ray February 19, 2021, 12:00 pm

    How can you sue for something that is perfectly legal?

  • MICHAEL David ANDERSON February 19, 2021, 10:03 am

    Amusingly enough, “ghost guns” remained a hobbey until the current Idiot General (pardon the typo, Attorney General) Becerra went on live television ranting his lunacy about 80% and dibbing them “ghost guns.” Talk about being careful about what one says!

  • SuperG February 19, 2021, 9:36 am

    Federal law allows a citizen to make his own gun for personal use. I don’t know how Commiecrats are going to get around that.

    • Mark N February 19, 2021, 11:36 am

      California law requires serialization of the frame prior to beginning the construction of a homemade firearm. Obtaining that serial number from the state also involves a background check. So although it is legal to manufacture a firearm for one’s own use cut a certain requirements must be met before the construction is legal here.

      • CH February 22, 2021, 9:01 am

        Mark
        That is my understanding of the Commiefornia law also—which I believe to be unconstitutional (US).
        Also, 80% Arms, and I believe Polymer80, provides engraving services where the customer can provide a serial number to comply with CA’s laws. Thus, I don’t believe the state has much to stand on—however that doesn’t prevent them from bringing money draining suits against these manufacturers.

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