Leeds ‘home gunsmith’ dies before trial

Philip Luty.
Philip Luty.
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A gun enthusiast facing terrorism charges over manuals he wrote on how to make homemade firearms has died.

Philip Luty, 46, of Bedford Mount, Tinshill, was facing three charges following a raid on his home by armed anti-terrorism officer in May 2009.

Mr Luty, who referred to himself as the ‘Home Gunsmith’, was facing the charges over three volumes, all under the title Expedient Homemade Firearms.

One of the books demonstrates how to construct a 9mm machine gun, using readily available materials.

Mr Luty, who has served a previous sentence for firearms offences, died from cancer on April 8.

He had been facing a trial for the three offences under the Terrorism Act 2000 relating to “ making a record of information likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism.”

Mr Luty also faced a further charge of possession of a prohibited weapon, the charge referred to a “collection of pipes which could be screwed together to produce an item from which a bulleted cartridge could be discharged.”

The proceedings against him were formally ended yesterday after the Recorder of Leeds, judge Peter Collier was informed of his death.

On his website, Mr Luty is described as “a pro-firearms campaigner with a no compromise stance on gun rights issues.”

Describing his first book, and the machine gun it shows how to make, he wrote: “The finished book must be written in a format which the average individual would understand and offer an improvised machine gun design simple enough for any would-be home gunsmith to put into practice, if he so desired.

“Upon its completion, the machine gun was reasonably light and compact. All items used in construction were standard hardware products which would not arouse suspicions when purchased or left ‘lying around’.

“It would fire a commercially available cartridge and could be clandestinely manufactured without the need for expensive machine-tools,” and added, “More importantly, at least as far as I was concerned, it succeeded in giving the British anti-gun lobby something to think about, which was the whole motivation behind the project in the first place.”