Man sentenced for making 3D printed gun

19 September 2019, 18:49

The firearm was produced using a 3D printer
The firearm was produced using a 3D printer. Picture: Met Police

By Sylvia DeLuca

A man has been sentenced in the UK's first conviction for firearms manufacture using a 3D printer.

Tendai Muswere, 26 (24.04.93), of Tachbrook Street, SW1, London, was sentenced today to three years imprisonment in what is believed to be the first conviction and sentencing in the UK for manufacturing a firearm using a 3D printer.

On Wednesday, 19 June at Southwark Crown Court Mr Muswere pleaded guilty to a charge of manufacturing a firearm, namely a 3D printed gun.

Officers executed a drugs warrant at Mr Muswere’s home in October 2017 and during the course of the operation found components of a 3D printed gun, capable of firing a lethal shot.

Mr Muswere, who does not hold a firearms licence, told officers that he was printing the firearm for a university project. He claimed not to be aware that the components he had made were capable of firing.

He later refused to comment on what his film project was about.

A search of his internet search history revealed that he had viewed videos demonstrating how to use a 3D printer to manufacture firearms which fired live ammunition. The officers also discovered cannabis plants and evidence of cannabis cultivation.

A second raid on Mr Muswere’s home in February 2018 resulted in the discovery of further components of a 3D printed gun.

Tendai Muswere pleaded guilty to making a gun capable of firing live ammunition.
Tendai Muswere pleaded guilty to making a gun capable of firing live ammunition. Picture: Met Police

The investigating officer, Detective Sergeant Jonathan Roberts, who led the investigation, said: “I hope that today’s sentencing sends a very clear and powerful message that we will prosecute anyone who thinks that they can get away with being in possession of, or manufacturing a firearm, in London.

“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 barrelled weapon.

"We know that Muswere was planning to line the printed firearms with steel tubes in order to make a barrel capable of firing.”