The National Rifle Association on Friday applied for protection (bankruptcy) as part of a rehabilitation and restructuring program aimed at moving the influential gun rights group to Texas.
The submission comes six months after a New York attorney general filed a lawsuit seeking to terminate the NRA for alleged misappropriation of funds.
The legal team has said it will rebuild itself as a Texas nonprofit organization to get out of what it describes as the “corrupt political and administrative system of New York,” where it is currently registered
The NRA, which said it did not violate the legal usage fund, filed a petition for protection under Chapter 11 at U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Dallas.
In its completion, the group claimed to have assets of between $ 100 million and $ 500 million, and liabilities for the same dollar range.
The NRA’s biggest unsecured debt is its former advertiser Ackerman McQueen, who owes $ 1.27 million, according to the indictment. The gun group and the advertising company have filed lawsuits against each other.
“The plan can be summarized: We are in DUMPING New York, and we are pursuing plans to integrate the NRA in Texas,” NRA chief executive and vice-president Wayne LaPierre wrote in a statement on Friday announcing the launch.
He added that “no major changes are expected in the performance of the NRA or staff.”
LaPierre also said that the NRA is not insolvent and the move to Texas would make the organization stronger. “We are as financially strong as we have been in years,” he said.
He added that the organization had no plans to relocate the NRA headquarters from Fairfax, Virginia.
Six Month Period
The NRA said it was expected to emerge from bankruptcy within six months, and in a letter to its retailers said it would “propose a system to provide full payment on all legal claims for creditors.”
“The NRA will move quickly through the reconstruction process. Its day-to-day operations, its training programs, and the promotion of the Second Amendment will continue as normal, meaning that the NRA will continue to rely on the performance of its valued suppliers, ”the letter said.
New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement that the government would review the inclusion of the NRA, but added: “We will not allow the NRA to use this or any other strategy to avoid responding and accountability to my office.”
“The NRA’s claimed financial status has finally met its moral status: bankrupt,” she added.
James’s lawsuit accuses the NRA’s leadership of diverting millions for their own personal use, resulting in a $64 million loss to the organization.
Gun safety organizations characterized the NRA’s decision to file bankruptcy as a “desperate maneuver.”
“Let’s be clear about what’s happening here: The NRA — which is losing power and hemorrhaging money — is now filing for bankruptcy in an attempt to escape legal culpability for years of financial mismanagement and illegal self-dealing,” John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, wrote in a statement Friday.
“This desperate maneuver is a de facto admission of guilt,” he added.
Similarly, Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, said that the NRA could attempt to “run from its years of deception, decadence, and self-dealing, but it can’t hide.”
“The NRA has become a front group for gun manufacturers and a personal piggy bank for its leadership – all while endangering millions of lives. They’ve been out of touch with the American people for decades, and now they’re out of money, too,” Watts said.