A STUDENT in the UK has been jailed for three years after police discovered he was making guns with a 3D printer after searching his home.
Tendai Muswere claimed he made the firearms to use as props for a university film project, Southwark Crown Court heard.
But when police approached his house to search it, he was caught throwing them out of the window.
The former media studies student at London South Bank University pleaded guilty earlier this year to two counts of possession and two of manufacturing the prohibited weapons.
The ruling is thought to be a UK-first, in that no one has ever been sentenced to prison for offences surrounding 3D printers.
The court heard that 26-year-old Muswere had been searching the internet for downloadable instructions to print 3D component parts for the firearms.
Judge Jeffrey Pegden told him in court: "On the second occasion police came to your house you were clearly aware of the illegality of your actions as you threw parts of a firearm out the kitchen window as police were making their way inside."
The student claimed that he presumed the gun frames he was making wouldn't be capable of actually firing anything, however, his internet search history begs to differ after showing him looking for steel tubing which would make the guns usable.
Evidence was also presented to the court which showed that the student had printed a large number of the guns, suggesting that he was looking for the perfect workable firearm.
However, Muswere's lawyer claimed that while his client was "a loner", he wasn't a violent person.
"He's something of a loner, somebody who has a long history of mental illness, not somebody with a history of violence or somebody with a history of an association with criminals," said John Kearney defending.