ARES Armor Under Investigation, Almost Raided by ATF Over Certain 80% AR-15 Lowers
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ARES Armor is one of the largest companies in the US that caters to the 80% AR15 lower market. Under current laws, an 80% lower is not considered a firearm as it still requires machining work to be completed before it can be operational. Because of this ARES Armor can sell these to anyone. It’s then completely legal under current laws to finalize the manufacture of your own firearm for personal use.
However, it seems that the ATF has a problem with a certain line of plastic 80% lowers that ARES, as well as some other vendors, have been selling. The ATF alleges that these plastic lowers were manufactured as functional receivers and were then modified to be 80% lowers.
The ATF sent out notices to these vendors instructing them to hand over the inventory of questionable lowers as well as the list of customers who purchased any of the lowers to date.
ARES had a bit of a problem with discloses their customer’s identities to the ATF. They agreed to turn over the inventory in question, but refused to turn over their customer lists to the ATF.
Anticipating that an ATF raid was forthcoming over their refusal, ARES filed for a temporary restraining order against the ATF to prevent them from raiding their facilities and seizing their customer records and/or any inventory.
It looks like this one will likely be going to the courts to get sorted out. According to Fox 5 San Diego, the owner of ARES Armor, Dimitrios Karras, fully realizes the seriousness of the situation,
“They were going to search all of our facilities and confiscate our computer and pretty much shut our business down,” said Karras. “The government invades our privacy on a daily basis and everyone thinks its ok. This is one of those situations where hopefully the governmental institutions will come in say this is protected and no you’re not taking it from them.”
The first hearing between the ATF and ARES could come as soon as March 20th.