- Associated Press - Thursday, July 10, 2014

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The gun manufacturer Remington Arms Co. will replace trigger mechanisms on Model 700 bolt-action hunting rifles, or provide some compensation to buyers, as part of a settlement of class-action lawsuits, the company said Thursday.

Suits filed in Missouri and Washington state claimed the rifle has a defective trigger mechanism that can cause injury and death. They claimed that Model 700 rifles sometimes fire unexpectedly, without a trigger pull.

The settlements announced Thursday still must be finalized in court.

Remington Arms agreed to the settlements even though it denied allegations of any economic loss, the company said in a joint statement with the plaintiffs. The company declined to comment further and did not provide details of how the trigger mechanisms will be replaced.

Timothy Monsees, the Kansas City, Missouri, attorney for plaintiffs in both cases, did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Remington has sold more than 5 million of the rifles since 1948.

Dozens of suits have been filed against Remington over the past three decades, several by people who claimed injury and death from guns that misfired. In a 1994 case in Texas, a jury awarded $17 million to a man who lost his foot.

Remington has blamed users of the guns, rather than a defective trigger mechanism, and won some of the cases. The company issued a statement in 2010, saying its Model 700 had been “free of defect” since it was first produced.

But in April, Remington issued a nationwide recall of both the Model 700 and Model Seven rifles. The recall applies to the models equipped with the X-Mark Pro trigger that was manufactured between May 2006 and April 9, 2014.

Some rifles may have excess bonding agent that could cause them to accidently fire, the company said at the time.

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