NRA files for bankruptcy as part of ‘restructuring’ in Texas

'The move will enable long-term, sustainable growth.'

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The National Rifle Association (NRA) has announced plans to restructure as a nonprofit based in Texas after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Friday.

The move seeks protection from creditors and a way out of what the gun rights advocacy group calls “a corrupt political and regulatory environment in New York” state, where it is currently registered and has operated since its founding in 1871, per Reuters

Read More: NRA admits current and former execs abused funds amid IRS probe

“The move will enable long-term, sustainable growth and ensure the NRA’s continued success as the nation’s leading advocate for constitutional freedom — free from the toxic political environment of New York,” the NRA said in a statement Friday (Jan. 15).

“Texas values the contributions of the NRA, celebrates our law-abiding members, and joins us as a partner in upholding constitutional freedom,” Chief Executive Wayne LaPierre said in a letter to members. “We seek protection from New York officials who illegally abused and weaponized the powers they wield against the NRA and its members.”

In a bid to dissolve the group, the NRA was sued in August by New York Attorney General Letitia James, alleging LaPierre and other executives used funds to inflate their salaries and expense accounts, theGRIO previously reported.

“For years, Wayne LaPierre and his lieutenants skirted the law and pocketed millions from NRA coffers to fund lavish lifestyles that included private jets, pricey vacations, expensive meals, and no-show contracts,” James said in a statement in November. “Mr. LaPierre’s reimbursement of just a fraction of the millions he personally profited from indicates how the NRA went unchecked under his leadership.”

Read More: New York attorney general Letitia James sues to dissolve NRA

On Friday, James noted that the NRA’s current financial status “has finally met its moral status: bankrupt,” she said in a statement. 

“We will not allow the NRA to use this or any other tactic to evade accountability and my office’s oversight,” James added. 

In a statement, LaPierre noted that the NRA is “as financially strong as we have been in years.” 

The group’s bankruptcy filing will likely pump the brakes on the New York lawsuit, and squash James’ efforts to dissolve the NRA.

LaPierre called the bankruptcy filing on Friday (Jan. 15) a “transformational moment in the history of the NRA.”

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