Saturday 31 January 2015

Japanese man (27) arrested for possessing home-made 3D handguns 'capable of killing'

Published 08/05/2014 | 12:45

Seized plastic handguns which were created using 3D printing technology are displayed at Kanagawa police station in Yokohama, south of Tokyo, in this photo taken by Kyodo May 8, 2014. Yoshimoto Imura became the first man to be arrested in Japan for illegal possession of two guns he created himself using 3D printing technology, Japanese media said on Thursday. The 27-year-old, a college employee in the city of Kawasaki, was arrested after police found video online posted by Imura claiming to have produced his own guns. Gun possession is strictly regulated in Japan. Police raided Imura's home and found five guns, two of which could fire real bullets, Japanese media said. Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo (JAPAN - Tags: CRIME LAW SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY) ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. MANDATORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. YES
Seized plastic handguns which were created using 3D printing technology. Photo: Reuters/Kyodo
The arrested man became the first man to be arrested in Japan for illegal possession of two guns he created himself using 3D printing technology. Reuters/Kyodo

A 27-year-old Japanese man was arrested today for illegally possessing handguns made by a three-dimensional printer, media said, marking the first such case in Japan, a country that takes pride in its low crime rate.

Police in April found five plastic guns and a 3D printer at the suspect's home in Kawasaki, south of Tokyo.

Two of the handguns were later proved capable of killing or wounding people, although no bullets were found at his home, public broadcaster NHK said.

Police also found blueprints for manufacturing guns stored in the suspect's personal computer. The blueprints were believed to have been downloaded from the Internet, NHK said.

"I made the guns by the 3D printer at home. I did not think it was illegal," the suspect, a college employee, was quoted by NHK as telling police.

A spokesman at Kanagawa Prefectural Police, which covers Kawasaki, declined to comment.

The suspect has frequently made Twitter entries aimed at justifying possession and manufacturing of guns and once said on the Internet "Gun restrictions are violation of human rights," NHK said.

Jiji news agency reported the suspect also possessed 10 toy guns.

Reuters

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