A few weeks ago, a well-executed and fraudulent campaign arose in the US. This campaign sent letters out… apparently 200 of them… to inform various gun dealers that the company, based in Germany, is recalling all firearms from the US because “the German headquarters no longer deem the USA a safe destination country for weapons”.
The full text of the letter is as follows:
NATION WIDE RECALL NOTICE: Heckler & Koch firearms
Heckler & Koch GmbH Germany is voluntarily recalling all firearms from the sporting and commercial markets in the USA.
To whom it may concern,
As part of our company’s new responsibility policy we hereby inform you that Heckler & Koch, as of May 1st 2017, has ceased the supply of firearms to the domestic market in the United States of America. Bound by the commitment to promote the protection of peace and human rights worldover, as is enshrined in the German Constitution, Heckler & Koch’s export policy has come under ethical review.
Owing to the rise of firearm-related deaths in your country in conjunction with the threat of ongoing civil unrest and a highly volatile foreign policy under the administration of President Donald Trump, the German headquarters no longer deem the USA a safe destination country for weapons exports.
This recall is being carried out to the wholesale and retail level. Your assistance is appreciated and necessary to help our company maintain its reputation on the global market and uphold the German law.
Please fill out the enclosed response form and send it back to Heckler & Koch GmbH, Heckler & Koch Str. 1, 78727 Oberndorf a.N. in Germany by May 12th 2017.
Of course, H&K released a statement to set the record straight:
Unknown parties have executed a sophisticated disinformation attack against Heckler & Koch USA in the past 24 hours. Authentic looking letters and other communications purporting to be from Heckler & Koch, Germany have been sent to several retailers in the U.S. stating HK GmbH is “recalling all firearms from the sporting and commercial market in the USA” and ceasing operations. This is untrue and a complete fabrication.
Heckler & Koch USA is committed to the U.S. market and in fact announced a major expansion to its American operations on January 13, 2017. HK-USA is expanding their existing operation with a multimillion investment in Columbus, Georgia. This includes a new 50,000 square-foot manufacturing facility.
“Heckler & Koch is unwavering in our resolution to establish a major presence here in the U.S. and the origin and motivation behind this recent falsehood is unknown to us. We intend to consult with law enforcement agencies and the authorities here and in Germany to discover the perpetrators behind this insidious attack,” said Mike Holley, VP of Sales and Marketing of HK USA. “Consumers, retailers, American law enforcement agencies, and our military customers can rest easy knowing we are here for the long haul.”
Bearing Arms reported on this, and provided the following information:
This letter is a well-executed prank carried out by the Peng Collective, an anonymous squadron of pacifist artists. Peng Collective is a joke. It is clearly a group of college students or recent graduates who can put together a fancy website but don’t know their own constitution, though they claim to be standing up for it in these letters.
So, if you were a recipient of this letter or have heard of it’s existence, it is indeed fake. While convincing, it’s a sad attempt at trying to create turmoil in the space. Hopefully most don’t believe this, and hopefully H&K doesn’t feel any type of impact as a result.