By John Crump
In 2013 Wilson and Defense Distributed released the Liberator which was the world’s first 3D printed gun. Wilson named the Liberator after the famous single shot World War II pistol that the Allies dropped over Nazi-occupied France. Only a couple weeks after releasing the plans the government demanded that he pull them down from his site claiming the plans violated export regulations as defined in the International Trade in Arms Regulations (ITAR).
The government asserted that Wilson was exporting guns without a license. The government viewed the files that Wilson uploaded to the internet the same way as if he would have exported physical firearms to other countries. Wilson disagreed with this assertion and decided to sue the government on First Amendment grounds for the right to distribute the 3D printed files online for anyone to download.
The first set of lawyers that Wilson hired told him that the case was hopeless, and he would not be able to win. Wilson was unwilling to accept that verdict, so he fired his attorneys and hired new ones working with …Read the Rest