NRA Drops Federal Suit Against NY to Focus on State Case

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The National Rifle Association is dropping its federal lawsuit accusing New York Attorney General Letitia James of wrongfully trying to dissolve it, saying it would focus instead on making the same claims in state court.

The gun rights group, which argues that James’s investigation of it is politically motivated, filed a notice of voluntary dismissal on Friday in federal court in Albany, New York. In a statement, it said it would continue to make the claims in state court in Manhattan, where the attorney general last year sued the NRA over allegations of fraud.

The move is important “because it will ensure that the NRA’s claims against NYAG James will be tried in the same court and by the same jury that will hear her lawsuit seeking to dissolve the NRA,” the organization said.

New York’s suit in state court survived the NRA’s motion to dismiss it in January, when a judge rejected the group’s argument that its federal suit was filed first and therefore trumped the state case. The judge also denied the NRA’s request to transfer the attorney general’s case to federal court.

The NRA recently saw its bankruptcy filing rejected by a Texas judge, leaving the group vulnerable to James’s efforts.

James, a Democrat who has called the NRA a “terrorist organization” and a “criminal enterprise,” said in a tweet that its voluntary dismissal of the federal suit was an “implicit admission that its strategy would never prevail.”

“We were victorious against its attempt to declare bankruptcy, and our fight for transparency and accountability will continue,” James said. “No one is above the law.”

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