Mexico is suing U.S. gun manufacturers over firearms flowing across the border

A boy aims a rifle as the Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities (CRAC-PF) community police f...

Mexico's Foreign Ministry announced on Wednesday that it will be moving forward with a lawsuit in the U.S claiming that America's pathetically inadequate gun laws — and the manufacturers who benefit thereof — have resulted in a flood of guns flowing across the border. That, the Foreign Ministry says, has in turn fueled violence in Mexico.

The suit, first reported by The Washington Post, could reach $10 billion, the Mexican government estimated during a press conference to introduce the pending case. The suit does not specifically name the United States as a defendant; instead, it targets a host of U.S. gun manufacturers, including high profile names such as Glock, Colt, and Smith & Wesson. The Foreign Ministry alleges that these companies "are conscious of the fact that their products are trafficked and used in illicit activities against the civilian population and authorities of Mexico," which has a slate of particularly strict domestic firearm laws.

Crucially, the suit — filed in U.S. Federal court in Boston — claims the companies were aware their products were being illegally moved into Mexico, and "brings this action to put an end to the massive damage that the Defendants cause by actively facilitating the unlawful trafficking of their guns to drug cartels and other criminals in Mexico."

The Mexican Foreign Ministry estimated on Wednesday that the trafficked guns resulted in destruction equal to up to two percent of the country's entire GDP.

"We don’t do it to pressure the United States,” FM legal advisor Alejandro Celorio explained during the ministry's press conference. “We do it so there aren’t deaths in Mexico."

The suit cites a number of recent cases in the U.S. in which courts have cleared the way for gun manufacturers to be held accountable for their product's ostensibly intended effects, including the ongoing lawsuit by parents of the children murdered at Sandy Hook elementary school against gun company Remington.