A senior RAF airman who called himself Dr. Evil as he sold guns on the black market has been jailed for six years.
John Yelland, 28, made his own deadly weapons, including sub-machine guns, with instruction manuals downloaded from the internet and materials bought on eBay.
He joined a ‘dark web’ site for trading illegal goods including firearms known as Black Market Reloaded and offered 25 sub-machine guns for sale.
Yelland, a Senior Aircraftsman who served in Afghanistan, also set up his own website as ‘Dr Evil’ to flog a range of Tasers, batons and pepper spray.
His now-estranged wife Maimie, 25, also helped him by ferrying a gun to his RAF base.
The operation was discovered last June when a parcel was intercepted at Tyneside Mail Centre in Gateshead containing a Taurus self-loading pistol and three magazines.
It was being returned to Yelland at RAF Marham in Norfolk after being sent to an address in County Durham where Yelland’s mother-in-law lived.
RAF police and local officers raided his home and seized two laptops, a stun gun and pepper spray.
Yelland admitted a series of firearms offences and was jailed at Norwich Crown Court on Tuesday.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of attempting to sell prohibited weapons, possession of a prohibited weapon, attempting to possess a prohibited weapon, attempting to manufacture a prohibited weapon, two further counts of possessing prohibited weapons and one of possessing ammunition without a firearms certificate.
Judge Anthony Bate told Yelland: “You gave no indication to anyone else at that station to the dark side of your character
“It’s plain in my view from the postings on the dark web that you appeared to relish dealing with like-minded individuals. The messages all had sinister undertones.”
His wife, Maimie who admitted transferring criminal property and was jailed for six months.
Judge Bate said anyone who played a part in the movement of a firearm must expect a ‘robust’ punishment to deter others.