The Mail On Sunday exposed a massive international security risk posed by a gun that can be easily made with new 3D printers.
Brainchild of Defense Distributed, the “Liberator” pistol of is capable of firing a live round, from blueprints available on the internet. Two reporters managed to contruct the weapon within 36 hours and smuggled it onto a packed Eurostar train.
The reporters passed completely unchallenged through strict airport-style security to carry the weapon from London to Paris – during weekend rush-hour, alongside hundreds of unsuspecting passengers.
The plastic gun is capable of firing a .380 caliber bullet and does not trigger metal detectors. The 16-part pistol blueprints have since been downloaded more than 100,000 times, despite attempts to remove them.
Once on board the packed train on Friday, reporters were able to create a fully function firearm in just 30 seconds – even posing for pictures with the device.
Security experts and politicians said they were horrified at the implications of The Mail’s investigation. With some calling for a review to see how to better detect the 3D-printed guns, Lord West, the former UK Labour security Minister concluded,
‘These weapons are extremely dangerous because they are very difficult to detect with the methods we normally use. This is going to be a real problem, no doubt about it. People are going to have to rethink whether we need more checks.”