A scaffolder was caught by border agents buying a stun gun which was shipped to his home from China.
Sean Crozier admitted the offence under the Firearms Act and faced a prison sentence for obtaining the device.
A court heard the dad-of-two was unaware the purchase made over a shopping app was illegal.
Sheriff Alistair Noble told him he “didn’t think a sentence of imprisonment was necessary” and accepted Crozier didn’t appreciate the seriousness of his actions.
Crozier, 33, was sentenced to 200 hours of unpaid work at Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Tuesday after pleading guilty.
Fiscal depute Lindsay Magro told the court that a package sent through the Royal Mail was intercepted by the UK Border Agency in January 2018.
She said: “It was found to contain a stun device which could also be used as a torch.
“It had been sent from China in the name of the accused and to his home address.”
The border agents alerted Police Scotland and officers attended Crozier’s then address in Edinburgh’s Craigmillar area with a warrant in March that year.
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Crozier’s partner was home, the court heard, and she admitted the device belonged to him.
Interviewed by cops, Crozier told them he bought the device over the Wish app.
The device was confiscated and Crozier, now of Newtongrange, Midlothian, was charged.
Defence agent Rebecca Weissgerber said Crozier spent three nights in custody following his arrest.
She said: “He genuinely did not understand what he was doing was illegal.”
The court heard Crozier was “mortified and ashamed of his actions” and “accepts full responsibility”.
Sheriff Noble imposed unpaid work after ruling Crozier should not be jailed.