Just a couple of decades ago, Chinese arms maker Norinco used to import tens of thousands of AKs, shotguns and handguns into the United States.
On August 22, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), in conjunction with the BATFE, seized 52,601 firearms parts in violation of the Chinese Arms Embargo in Los Angeles yesterday.
Among these items were optics, stocks, buffer kits, grips, and muzzle devices. Arriving in three separate shipments, the contraband components had a combined domestic value of $378,225.00. The BATFE confirmed to CBP officers that the parts were both in violation of ITAR and the Export Control Act.
While most gun-lovers think of Chinese guns like the Poly-Tech AKMs and the Norinco MAK-90 rifle series, the CBP confiscation consisted of accessories - the majority of which meant for the AR-15.
Additionally, none of the items in question are de facto firearms in the eyes of the BATFE, and thus shouldn’t be affected by sporting clause import restrictions. But, given that most of the components shown on the CBP website appear to be for an AR-15, the BATFE may have classified them as military equipment and used the 1989 Chinese Arms Embargo as justification for their confiscation.
Though, anyone who has spent any time shopping for parts online, can attest that Chinese gun parts are easily found online, and legal to own. So, it should be interesting to see if this latest act is indicative of larger, sweeping restrictions on Chinese imports.