Rachel Fieldhouse


Alleged right-wing extremist planned to 3D-print gun

Alleged right-wing extremist planned to 3D-print gun

A man from New South Wales’ Central West region has been arrested by counter-terrorism police for planning to produce a 3D gun.

26-year-old Michael Priest has been charged for possessing a blueprint to 3D print a gun - which is prohibited by NSW firearm laws and carries a penalty of 14 years in prison.

Image: Police Multimedia / AFP

Police began investigating Mr Priest less than two weeks ago, after the Australian Border Force intercepted a package containing a firearm component addressed to the man.

Upon further investigation by the NSW Joint Counter Terrorism (JCTT) team, they discovered the man listed as the recipient of the package was also a right-wing extremist.

His home was searched by police on Friday, where they discovered a Nazi flag and a map of the state hanging on his bedroom wall.

Image: Police Multimedia / AFP

Mr Priest has allegedly been importing “legally obtained items” since the middle of 2020, which police said were to be used to manufacture weapons.

“The Joint Counter Terrorism Team acted early to prevent him manufacturing a firearm, even though he allegedly made significant preparations to be able to do so,” Stephen Dametto, the counter-terrorism commander of the Australian Federal Police, said in a statement.

The JCTT is made up of officers from the AFP and NSW Police, as well as investigators from intelligence agency ASIO and the NSW Crime Commission.

“The potential for 3D printers to print firearms, or their components, is something police are constantly monitoring, and we will take action if we have evidence a person intends to manufacture a firearm,” Dametto said.

NSW Police said homemade firearms were often poorly made, adding to the danger.

“These types of firearms add another layer of risk in terms of the safety of the community as they are unstable, and many are unable to maintain integrity once fired,” Detective Superintendent Mick Sheehy of the NSW Police and Counter Terrorism and Special Tactics Command said in a statement.

“We will not hesitate to take action if we believe there is a possibility that a firearm could land in the wrong hands.”

Mr Priest appeared before a Dubbo magistrate on Monday, where he was refused bail.

He is due to appear in court again on September 27.

Image: Police Multimedia / AFP

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