Gun rights advocates have filed a new lawsuit in D.C. federal court, this time seeking to make it possible for American expats to buy guns when they’re back home in the United States.
The suit, filed Friday at the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, challenges a government requirement that forces gun buyers without a federal firearms license to fill out their state of residence on a special transaction form. It also targets a law that bar gun dealers from selling fire arms to non-U.S. residents for anything other than hunting or sports purposes.
The case is being brought by the Bellevue, Wash.-based Second Amendment Foundation, as well as two American citizens living in Canada and England. According to the complaint, the two individual plaintiffs have gun licenses from Arizona and Utah, but say they are unable to buy weapons while in the United States because they do not have a state of residence that they can use to fill out the required forms. They argue that the government’s restrictions violate the Second Amendment and Fifth Amendment equal protection rights of U.S. citizens who live abroad.
The plaintiffs are asking the court for an injunction that would prevent the gun restrictions from being enforced in respect to U.S. citizens who live abroad. The suit says nothing about non-citizens.
On March 9, the Second Amendment Foundation and three District residents filed a suit against D.C.’s government over its use of the California Handgun Roster, a limited list of handguns that civilians are allowed to purchase.
Alan Gura of Alexandria, Va.'s Gura & Possessky is representing the plaintiffs.