And finally… spray and pray

And finally... spray and pray

Catholic nuns who own shares in gun maker Smith & Wesson are suing the company over its manufacturing of “mass-killing assault weapons”.

New York law firm Newman Ferrara LLP is representing the coalition of four congregations of Catholic sisters who have filed the stockholder derivative lawsuit in Nevada.

In a statement, the nuns said: “AR-15-style rifles, like those manufactured by Smith & Wesson, have been the weapon of choice for killers responsible for the deadliest mass shootings in American history.”

The nuns previously failed in a bid to secure a third-party human rights impact assessment of the company’s practices at a September shareholder meeting, which was opposed by the board but backed by 26.7 per cent of shareholders.

The lawsuit accuses members of the board and executive officers of breaching their fiduciary duties by “prioritising short-term profit over long-term risk” and disregarding the “ever-increasing and substantial likelihood of liability that threatens its long-term existence”.

Newman Ferrara partner Jeffrey Norton said: “Much like the pharmaceutical companies being hammered by civil judgments and fines after enjoying years of profits from the sale of dangerous opioids, Smith & Wesson’s board wilfully ignores the potentially ruinous exposure the company faces from its marketing and sale of weapons designed specifically for mass killing.

“We are proud to partner with these congregations of Catholic sisters who have long sought corporate responsibility through their shareholder activism.”

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