After police seized a fully functioning firearm at a home, an Australian teenager was charged with gun offenses.

A search warrant was executed at the 18-year-old's home in early June then police in Western Australia found the weapon and several other firearms, reported CNN. Detective Senior Sergeant Blair Smith told reporters that the firearm resembled a toy, but had the "ability to cause serious harm within our community." He found it deeply concerning that the teenager was able to "manufacture this firearm at home with a 3D printer and readily available materials."

It is believed the semiautomatic assault rifle, which can fire 15 lethal rounds at once, took just two days to make. The materials apparently cost as little as $40, reported 9News. The teenager, who is due to appear in court next week, has been charged with offenses including possession of a prohibited weapon and the unlicensed manufacture of firearms and ammunition.

According to 3DNatives, the exact details of how the weapon was constructed and which technologies were used are yet unknown. It is highly likely that the manufacturer used a regular desktop 3D printer and acquired the models for the gun on the internet. Australian police have also launched a special task force that targets individuals who try to manufacture firearms at their residence.

In 2021, the Western Australia government proposed changing gun laws. It was done to make it illegal to manufacture plastic 3D firearms, so under the proposal, a maximum 10-year jail sentence would apply to anyone who is caught with plans or instructions on how to make them. Civilians in Australia are banned from possessing fully automatic weapons. All other gun ownership is heavily regulated and restricted to individuals aged over 18 with a valid license.

It was in 1996 that the laws were introduced. They came into force after a gunman opened fire on tourists at Port Arthur, a former colonial prison in Tasmania. About 35 people were killed back then. Later, a gun amnesty was launched. It encouraged people to hand in guns at local police stations anonymously with no penalty. According to the government, around 57,000 guns were surrendered in just three months during the last national amnesty in 2017.

Representation image. Pixabay.

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