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A "trigger" and "magazine" which could supposedly be fitted together to make a viable 3D printed gun are in fact actual parts of the printer, the businessman whose shop was raided by police said.
Police confiscated "Andrew's" 3D printer from his model-making shop yesterday and hours later hailed their findings as "a really significant discovery".
However, the shop owner, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the supposed trigger and magazine for bullets were actually parts of the printer - which he uses to make models.
In tears, he said: "I'm angry, disappointed and hurt. This could kill me, this could threaten the business. I was sat here yesterday morning and I saw police officers coming to the door. I just thought it was a customer. We have officers who are customers.
"They came in and said 'We have got a warrant to search this premises'. They accused me of making gun parts."
Presented with the "trigger" and "magazine", he explained that one was a spool and the other another part of the printer, to which he said the officer replied: "Oh! OK." "Andrew" was released an hour later on bail.
Greater Manchester Police assistant chief constable Steve Heywood urged caution over the 3D-printed parts found:
3D printing works by building up layer upon layer of material - typically plastic - to build complex solid objects.
Templates can be bought or downloaded and sent to printers - now available for domestic consumer use - and the products are built in minutes by the machines.
Common uses include jewellery, shoes and mobile phone cases but it is thought in future we will see clothing, medical devices and consumer electronics printed at home in this way.
US-based plastic gun maker Cody Wilson said 3D printed guns will be part of Britain's future, in an interview with Sky News.
Mr Wilson, who is the founder of a company that publishes gun designs online, said Britain's attitude towards firearms was "schizophrenic".
Lengthy prison sentences for possessing a firearm will help police tackle the potential new "phenomenon" of 3D guns, Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy told Sky News.
He said: "We will need to look at this new development but I do think it is crucial that in this country illegal possession of a firearm does attract a very lengthy prison sentence
"As long as that continues, I think that will help as a huge help to us in controlling what might be this new phenomenon about 3D guns."
Guns created by 3D printers "could be the next generation of firearms" in the UK, Greater Manchester Police said.
Detective Inspector Chris Mossop said: "These could be the next generation of firearms and a lot more work needs to be done to understand the technology and the scale of the problem.
"If what we have seized today can, as we suspect, be used to make a genuine firearm then today will be an important milestone in the fight against this next generation of homemade weapons.
"I would strongly urge anyone who has information about the whereabouts of a gun in their community to call us."
The discovery of a plastic magazine, trigger and the 3D printer used to create them during a search in Bagley, Manchester, was hailed as "really significant" by Greater Manchester Police.
A plastic magazine and trigger, which could have potentially been fitted together to make a gun, were seized by police in Manchester along with the 3D printer that created them.
The components are now being examined to see if they could have been fitted together to make a viable 3D gun.
The technology works by allowing anyone with a 3D printer - which can be bought on the high street for £1,200 - to download designs for guns or components.
A man has been arrested on suspicion of making gunpowder and remains in custody for questioning, Greater Manchester Police said.
A 3D printer, which police believe criminals may have been using in an attempt to create a firearm, has been seized in Manchester.