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DC appeals court reinstates suit against gun manufacturers

[JURIST] The District of Columbia Court of Appeals has revived part of a 2000 lawsuit against gun manufacturers seeking to hold the companies liable for shootings carried out with automatic weapons. The entire lawsuit was dismissed in a 2002 DC Superior Court ruling, but on Thursday the full Court of Appeals ruled that DC's Assault Weapon Manufacturing Strict Liability Act [text] allows individuals, but not the government, to sue gun manufacturers for damages arising from injuries or deaths caused by the gun's discharge. In its opinion [PDF text], the court also held that the law does not allow claims against gunmakers and distributors for creating a public nuisance and for conducting their business with little or no regard for the risks caused by their products. The Legal Action Project, which represents the District of Columbia in the suit has background on the case. Friday's Washington Post has more.

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