Man arrested over 3D printed guns
A year ago this month the world went into meltdown as Cody Wilson released files, printed and fired his Liberator 3D printed gun. The panic that ensued after the infamous video included: a Daily Mail journalist smuggling a non-working version (or a piece of plastic as deadly as a calculator) onto the Eurostar, a Finnish journalist nearly blowing his own hand off, Congressman Steve Israel discussing the matter in congress and most ridiculously Greater Manchester Police closing what they thought was a 3D Printing Gun Factory when in fact it was a spool holder and extruder key rather than magazine and trigger.
Cody Wilson’s gone a bit quiet on the gun front of late, preferring to discuss Bit Coin and Dark Wallet but a story in Japan recently pricked his interest again. 27-year-old Yoshitomo Imura was arrested in Kawasaki on suspicion of illegally manufacturing and possessing handguns, five of which were 3D printed.
Gun laws in Japan are amongst the strictest on earth and the man, who said he was unaware it was illeagal to 3D print guns, could face a hefty sentence.
This story prompted this response from Cody Wilson on his blog:
“I have often been asked who the first person to be arrested for 3D gun printing would be. My answer was the creative and curious.
Yoshitomo Imura is a person of strong character and virtue under unfavorable circumstances. He expressed with his work only virtue, but this virtue is ostracized by his society. He performed his work in the open, without suspicion, fear or dishonor. That he must harvest persecution and calamity for his creative and intrepid instincts is an indictment of his tame and mediocre society. Yoshitomo Imura is trying to say something profound.- is trying to be profound.
I hope Mr. Imura’s attitude to his instincts is not reversed by the tomb-like atmosphere, which will now cloud his life.”
If you watch the production videos by Mr Imura it seems he was just an enthusiast and did think he’d be covered by merely firing blanks. However, the police in Japan clearly felt these guns were a threat and have seized them along with the printer they were made on and placed Yoshitomo Imura in handcuffs. The man is apparently being very cooperative with the investigation.
The construction of Yoshitomo Imura’s guns contains rubber bands and instead of firing bullets and putting himself behind bars he could have been making a fortune off Kickstarter with a rubber band gun.
In what must be about the fifth of sixth rubber band firearm on the crowdfunding site Dorhout R&D LLC have launched the Automatic Rubber Band Blaster Kit. Interestingly, what sepearates this from other rapid fire rubber band arms on Kickstarter is that you could print it yourself.
For as little as a $5 pledge you will receive the STL files to produce the gun, which reportedly fires 10 rubber bands per second, yourself, all you have to add is the motors and the battery and you’ll be annoying/having someone’s eye out in a matter of hours.