23ABC Exclusive: Gun store owner speaks about ATF agreement

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The owner of The Armory in Southwest Bakersfield agreed to forfeit more than three thousand parts to make assault rifles to the U.S. Department of Justice. He spoke exclusively to 23 ABC on Tuesday night.

"At no time was it ever a firearm, at no time was I doing anything illegal and at no time should they have been in here and taken my property," said Christopher Cook.

Christopher Cook designed a piece for the AR-15 lower receivers from his store in Bakersfield, making the rifles easier to build, but harder to trace. That piece piqued the interest of the federal government.

"What I was actually doing was manufacturing a core, so a core piece that was actually inside, so there would have been a puck," said Cook.

He calls it a clerical error and says his former lawyer gave the ATF the wrong information as to how the pieces are actually made, leading to a raid in 2014--and him voluntarily giving more than 3-thousand parts today.

"The reason that I quit fighting is because it's a battle that I don't believe the U.S state attorney, the Department of Justice or the AFT would say they were going to give our stuff back.”

The investigation started back in 2014 when the ATF raided his business and took 3,804 firearms from his business.

"They were under the impression that what we were trying to do was actually manufacture a fire arm or an unlicensed, unserialized firearm and then revert it back to what would be considered an 80% blank," says Cook.

In response to Cook’s claim, the DOJ said that their agreement will make sure the receivers never hit the streets and stay out of the hands of criminals.

 

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