US Judge Dismisses NRA Bankruptcy Case Over Attempt to Avoid Civil Lawsuit

US Judge Dismisses NRA Bankruptcy Case Over Attempt to Avoid Civil Lawsuit

US Judge Dismisses NRA Bankruptcy Case Over Attempt to Avoid Civil Lawsuit

Hale's ruling is without prejudice, a legal term of art that means the NRA can attempt to file for bankruptcy again if the group wishes.

A Texas judge dismissed the National Rifle Association's Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition on Tuesday, dealing a major setback to the gun rights group amid an ongoing legal fight in its home state of NY.

"The court believes the NRA's objective in filing bankruptcy is less like a traditional bankruptcy case in which a debtor is faced with financial difficulties or a judgment that it can not satisfy and more like cases in which courts have found bankruptcy was filed to gain an unfair advantage in litigation or to avoid a regulatory scheme", Judge Harlin Hale wrote.

Letitia James, New York's attorney general, had last August filed a lawsuit seeking the dissolution of the NRA, which she accused of corruption and misspending.

The NRA did not immediately respond to requests for comment Tuesday.

Closely aligned with Republicans including former President Donald Trump, the NRA has always been instrumental in thwarting Democratic-backed gun control measures in the U.S. Congress.

LaPierre and the NRA have denied wrongdoing.

"The @NRA does not get to dictate if and where it will answer for its actions, and our case will continue in NY court", wrote James.

Hale also alluded to Wayne LaPierre's admission of putting the NRA in bankruptcy proceedings without notifying numerous group's board members and/or top officers.

President Joe Biden's administration opposed the NRA in the trial. The NRA is based in Virginia but has always been chartered as a nonprofit organization in NY state.

LaPierre testified that he feared James would try to put the NRA into receivership.

Hale's ruling also comes one week after the U.S. Department of Justice publicly objected to the NRA's bankruptcy plan.

The NRA also has faced internal upheaval in recent years including a failed effort to oust LaPierre over allegations of mismanagement.

The Texas Tribune reported the NRA subsequently announced it was leaving NY, where it has been incorporated, and moving to Texas. Texas is a Republican-governed state whose leaders are friendly to the NRA's stance against gun control.

Biden has called gun violence "a national embarrassment" following a spate of mass shootings, and called for Congress to ban military-style assault weapons and large-capacity magazines.

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