Mr M was detained in raids after police were tipped off that weapons were being stored in a locked electrical unit at the flats where he lived.
Officers uncovered two shotguns concealed behind a black bin liner, with one found loaded with live ammunition.
Mr M was charged with two counts of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life after police DNA work on one of the guns matched his own.
He was also charged with two counts of possessing ammunition with intent
Mr M instructed Stuart Miller Solicitors insisting he had never come into contact with the firearms – but that he had been into the electrical cupboard with others to smoke when it was too cold outside.
The law firm hired its own DNA experts to produce a report to establish whether his DNA was on the gun through innocent – or secondary – transfer.
With the results not helping Mr M’s case, the defence chose not to rely on its own report and instead asserted Mr M’s defence that he had not acted criminally.
At trial, he was cleared of handling one of the firearms which did not contain his DNA, while jurors could not agree a verdict on the gun which did purport to reveal his genetic code.
Despite a retrial in which prosecutors highlighted a fresh expert report suggesting “extremely strong support” that Mr M’s DNA was on the gun, his defence team stuck to their instructions.
By maintaining that his fibres had come into contact with the gun through secondary transfer, Mr M was acquitted on all counts.