Kansas City sues ATF, alleging lack of oversight in licensing firearms dealer

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — City leaders have filed a lawsuit against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.

The complaint, which was filed in U.S. District Court in New York, alleged the ATF didn’t show enough oversight when the agency granted a license to firearms maker Jimenez Arms. That company was also the subject of a separate lawsuit filed by Kansas City leaders in April 2020. The company has since filed for bankruptcy, but according to the lawsuit, it has reopened under the name JA.

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas joined others in a teleconference organized by Everytown for Gun Safety. Mayor Lucas said countless Jimenez firearms are found at scenes of violent crime in Kansas City. Mayor Lucas also said that manufacturer’s low prices make the guns easy to buy, use and discard.

“We have a supply problem with people who are not following legal processes, to transfer guns, to sell guns and get them into Kansas City,” Mayor Lucas said.

In 2020, Kansas City saw more than 600 non-fatal shootings and 176 homicides, both of which were record highs. Mayor Lucas, along with Kwame Raoul, Illinois’ attorney general, complained that Jimenez’s guns are falling into criminal hands too often, and the ATF isn’t intervening.

“The threat of violence against our community is far too great for federal firearms licenses to be routinely approved without adequate review,” Raoul said.

“They’re being given to criminals. They’re being given to people who are committing violent acts and it’s happened again and again in Kansas City,” Mayor Lucas said.

A spokesperson for the ATF said the agency doesn’t comment on pending lawsuits. Jimenez Arms still operates a Facebook page. FOX4 News’ messages to that account weren’t answered on Friday.

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