A man has admitted manufacturing a gun using a 3D printer in what is believed to be the first conviction of its kind in the UK.
Tendai Muswere, 25, pleaded guilty to charges of manufacturing a firearm, namely a 3D printed gun, at Southwark Crown Court on Wednesday.
The components of the gun, which was capable of firing a lethal shot, were discovered while officers were searched his south-west London home for drugs in October 2017, the Met Police said.
Muswere told officers at the time that he was 3D printing the gun as part of a “dystopian” university film project and claimed that he was not aware that what he had made had the capability to shoot.
However, a search of his internet search history revealed that he had seen videos demonstrating how to use a 3D printer to make a gun which could fired live ammunition.
Officers also found evidence that Muswere had been growing cannabis at his home as well.
A second raid on Muswere’s home in February 2018 resulted in the discovery of further components of a 3D printed gun.
Acting Detective Sergeant Jonathan Roberts, from the Central West CID, who led the investigation, said: “Muswere claimed that he was printing the firearms for a ‘dystopian’ university film project but he has not explained why he included the component parts necessary to make a lethal barreled weapon.
We know that Muswere was planning to line the printed firearms with steel tubes in order to make a barrel capable of firing.
“This conviction, which I believe is the first of its kind relating to the use of a 3D printer to produce a firearm, has prevented a viable gun from getting into the hand of criminals.”