Engineer’s mail order arsenal.

AN ENGINEER was allowed to build up a mail order arsenal of dangerous firearms, a court heard.

Police found unlicensed sub machine guns, a pistol and a revolver when they raided the home of David Bond, 36, Warrington Crown Court was told.

Originally the weapons were bought in a decomissioned state by Bond from Staffordshire-based Worldwide Arms Ltd.

But Bond used his expertise to make them fully operational, the court was told.

Bond, of Cherry Sutton Mews, Widnes, admitted three offences of possessing a prohibited weapon, possession of a pistol without a firearms certificate and two offences of holding ammunition without authority.

Jailing him for 12 months, Judge Stephen Clarke said: “It is alarming that these items can be purchased through the post. In many cases they could be used in crime.

“There seems to be an open market to obtain these firearms and the firm holds a licence from the Home Office to do it. It is absolutely monstrous.”

Prosecutor John Hedgecoe said the defendant’s neighbour, Joan Newport, called the police after hearing a succession of explosions from Bond’s home.

Officers arrived to find a bizarre scene. Both Bond and his friend Peter Langdale, who had been drinking, were naked in the living room.

Also inside was the defendant’s partner Maria Plumpton and a small child who appeared upset.

Cheshire police armed response unit was brought in after officers found live ammunition in the kitchen.

Further investigations revealed a sten gun-style sub machine gun, hidden in between layers of insulation.

Another sub machine gun was found behind a settee, an automatic pistol was recovered from a kitchen drawer and a self-loading pistol was discovered in a box on top of a wardrobe.

Bond had also rigged up trip wires and a shed alarm which fired blank rounds from a 12-bore shotgun to deter intruders.

Arrested and interviewed the defendant told police he had been cheated out of payment for engineering work carried out and had got drunk with his friend.

He admitted discharging the sub machine gun in his yard.

Thomas Watson, defending, said: “It would seem any member of the public can write off and get these guns.”

Bond had a fascination for purchasing the deactivated weapons and then restoring them to full working order, he added.

Warrington Guardian

From 1997

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