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Laura Seitz, Deseret News
Employees of Ammo & More of Stevensville, Montana set up their table at the Crossroads of the West Gun Show at South Towne Expo Center in Sandy on Friday, Feb.1, 2013.

SAN FRANCISCO — The city of San Francisco is suing three gun accessories companies and a Utah-based gun show company for alleged skirting of California gun laws.

In a lawsuit filed in Superior Court in San Francisco, City Attorney Dennis Herrera argues that these businesses are violating a California state law prohibiting the sale or manufacture of high-capacity gun magazines by selling the magazines as "repair kits." He named companies based in Texas, Oregon and Ohio as well as B & L Productions Inc., a Utah company that puts on the Crossroads of the West Gun Shows.

"Each of the defendants in this case has flouted California's public safety mandate for its own profit," the lawsuit states.

Herrera writes that Crossroads of the West puts on shows in California, including one at the Cow Palace, which he said "is in San Francisco's backyard." At these gun shows, the repair kits are imported and sold.

"These 'repair kits' are not individual magazine parts to replace, say, a worn-out spring or a cracked baseplate in a lawfully possessed magazine," the lawsuit states. "Instead they are disassembled large-capacity magazines that are readily assembled by purchasers into brand-new, fully functional large-capacity magazines."

Herrera is seeking an injunction from the court that will halt the sale of the repair kits and an order that will require the defendants to "pay civil penalties for their past acts of unfair competition." According to his office, the law prohibiting the magazines went into effect on Jan. 1, 2000, and is meant to ban the use of the accessory "favored … among mass murderers."

According to the Crossroads of the West Gun Shows web page, the company has 13 shows planned in California through December, including three at the Cow Palace near San Francisco. The company's owner was out of town Tuesday, but employees said he planned to issue a statement on the lawsuit at some later time.

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