Latest Fight Over Guns in US is Selling of “Unfinished Receivers”


Dimitri Karras, CEO of Ares Armor, displays a lower receiver for an AR-15 Assault Rifle at Ares Armor in Oceanside, CA on Thursday, May 8, 2014. It is legal in California to build an AR-15 rifle that has no serial number if the base meets ATF specifications. Karras’ problems stem from selling an AR-15 lower receiver which does not meet current guidelines. Ares Armor makes the gun part out of plastic instead of the ATF mandated metal. The semi-automatic rifle reportedly contains markings which alert the gun owner where to drill. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Karras displays a lower receiver for an AR-15 assault rifle at Ares Armor in Oceanside, Calif. Karras, a former Marine who was stationed at nearby Camp Pendleton, opened his store after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. He sells combat packs, slings, tactical belts and carriers for wearing armor. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Karras shows an AR-15 rifle at his store in Oceanside, Calif. Ares Armor makes the gun part out of plastic instead of the ATF-mandated metal. The AR-15-style semiautomatic assault rifle reportedly contains markings that alert the gun owner where to drill. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Completed upper carriers for AR-15 assault rifles prepare to be packed for shipping at Ares Armor’s installation facility in Oceanside, Calif. Karras is not licensed to sell firearms and points out that no guns in his store are for sale – only the parts to make them, an experience with edgy appeal that he says is “very cool” and represents the difference between buying a house or building your own. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Lower receivers for AR-15 rifles are seen for sale at Ares Armor in Oceanside, Calif. Karras acknowledged that there is something else that attracts customers to his store: They don’t have to submit to a background check and their gun won’t have a serial number that could be traced. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Karras stands behind a counter with lower receivers for sale at Ares Armor in Oceanside, Calif. “In the current day and age we live in, the NSA receives files on almost everyone in our country”, Karras said. “This is a way for people to maintain their privacy”. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Workers put together upper carriers on AR-15 assault rifles at the Ares Armor installation facility in Oceanside, Calif. Law enforcement officials say their inability to trace the firearms is becoming a major problem. Firearms built with unfinished receivers are increasingly being found at crime scenes and being purchased from suspected gang members by undercover ATF agents. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)


Workers put together upper carriers on AR-15 assault rifles at the Ares Armor installation facility in Oceanside, Calif. Law enforcement officials say their inability to trace the firearms is becoming a major problem. Firearms built with unfinished receivers are increasingly being found at crime scenes and being purchased from suspected gang members by undercover ATF agents. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)

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