A recent investigation led to the first such bust in Winnipeg in a 3D printed “ghost rifle” business, while police in other Canadian cities are seeing an increase in unaccounted for firearms. On June 1, Winnipeg police charged a 31-year-old man in arms trafficking after seizing 28 weapons from his home, many of which were created using a 3D printer and without serial numbers or markings for the monitoring.
“I can think of only one reason why we would make a gun that cannot be registered or detected and that is to circumvent existing laws to protect us all,” Insp. From Winnipeg. Max Waddell said at a press conference on June 9.
Police said they were first alerted after the man attempted to buy a prohibited part for an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle from a gun dealer in mid-May. Under a federal ban on a range of weapons that came into effect on May 1, restricted rifles like the AR-15 are now prohibited.
However, this is not the first time that unseen “ghost rifles” have been detected in Canada.
Regina police made two arrests in May after finding illegally produced firearms and “computer-machined firearm parts”. Last December, Ontario police broke a firearm manufacturing ring and confiscated several weapons made using a 3D printer.
Instructions for making these weapons can be found online and in the United States, 80% of an assembled “ghost gun” can be legally purchased.
The director of the D.C. Judicial Services Department said in January that Washington police saw these types of weapons “almost every day.”
The increase in reported 3D printed firearms has raised concerns among some US lawmakers and gun control advocates who fear that this latest development will provide faster and easier access to weapons.
In Canada, it is a criminal offense to make firearms if a person does not have a license to do so.
Rod Giltaca, CEO and executive director of the Canadian Coalition for Firearms Rights, told CTV National News that anyone who breaks Canadian gun laws could face up to 10 years in prison.
“You cannot make firearms without registering them or at least letting the government know that you are making firearms,” said Giltaca. “As for AR-15 before May 1, these are restricted firearms, so they had to be registered, so there are a multitude of charges to which this person could be subject. ”
The RCMP said in a statement that it is “monitoring the situation with respect to 3D-printed firearms”, but has cautioned that these firearms do not change current gun laws.