Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Gun Dealer "had lots of guns" shock horror


Most weapons, which also included automatic and semi-automatic weapons and thousands of rounds of ammunition, were found at the house, which is believed to belong to a registered gun dealer.

Detectives said some weapons may be legal, others may not.


Anonymous said...

"Detectives said some weapons may be legal, others may not."

Like, whoaaah! man! A gun dealer may be storing legal weapons?

Am I correct in saying this fellow's black? Anyone else suspicious that the police may be trying to victimise another group so the muslims won't feel so, uh, picked upon? Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Did a police spokesperson utter those time loved words 'we have taken them off the streets'
As my old mum used to say 'I only asked cos I want to know'.

Anonymous said...

According to the Mail report 'The man arrested was already awake when officers arrived this morning. He opened the door wearing black boxer shorts. His wife was asleep upstairs'

So, a licensed gun dealer may have some guns that aren't on his paperwork; does that really necessitate a dawn raid? I wonder if the Plod ever realise how PATHETIC they look, especially when they make asinine statements like "The premises raided were used to store hundreds and hundreds of weapons. I have never seen anything like it."

We raided a grocer, there was food everywhere! I suppose they guy's lucky SO19 didn't turn up and shoot him....

Anonymous said...

Stuart I agree with you however the media are selling this as another Hungerford/Ian Hamilton avoided. The fact that most of the guns are legally held is irrelevant to them. I had to smile when they showed pictures of air pistols and pellets. "All these guns!" The horror! Unfortunately most poeple in Britain have swallowed the lie about gun owners causing crime.

The sad fact is this clown has caused yet more damage to the cause of genuine gun owners. He has given plod the ideal excuse to make a media circus and blacken the name of law abiding gun owners. If you are a firearms dealer you need to play by the rules.

Anonymous said...

According to the Mail newspaper he is Asian gun dealer Mick Shepherd.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 1:26 - Hmmmmmmm. Very interesting. Although I wish they would stop tarring the whole of Asia when they mean Pakistani.

OTOH, if he is a Paki, he is to be congratulated for not having an idiot muslim name.

Still, most interesting.

Anon 8:01 - I don't know why the British were so eager to fall for the lies about guns that they let their ancient freedom be removed with no fuss. Obviously Hungerford was the act of a serious nut case. British people had had guns for hundreds of years with no massacres.

It's interesting that many people commenting on blogs seem to believe that guns actually leap up out of a drawer into your hand and begin firing themselves. They'd be fearful to even pick a gun up in case it started firing at their head.

Anonymous said...

The Guy in question is Mick Shephard who used to have a website, with quite an extensive collection.

However I could probably understand why the police raided his house, what kind of guy has 700 guns lying around.

As a shotgun owner myself, I beleive that there is nothing wrong with owning guns, however they should be securely locked up so they cannot enter the hands of others.

Whereas apparenty the police found guns all over the house, including the garage, which in my opinion is irresponsible.

Anonymous said...

All of you are stupid and shouldn't believe everything you read. Trident just wanted to look good so they picked on an innocent REGISTERED FIREARMS DEALER, yes registered to stop them from being disbanded.

The guns were not just lying around they were locked to walls and the garage has steal locked police approved doors.

Mick Shepherd has 4 police checks a year and had only just had one. Trident were told by Kent police not to do the raid to which they ignored.

He is also NOT a Pakistani or mmuslim. He was born in India and came when he was a child and is a british citizen.

He is not a danger to anyone. He is a catholic and he loves his family. He has 2 children who grow up in that house and never felt unsafe and he also has 5 grandchildren 3 of which stay there most weekends.

Trident have only been successful in locking up an innocent man and taking him away from his loving family.

Gun crime has only become a major issue since some nutter went to Dunblain and made a bad name for guns so the government banned them which was the biggest mistake they ever made.

A gun may be able to kill but it has to have a person to pull the trigger. So do many other things. Objects DON'T kill people do.

You may wonder how I know so much about Mick Shepherd. Well the answer is I am his daughter and I love him very much. MY children, my husband and myself have never ever felt in danger around him or the house.

Anonymous said...

i am mick shepards couisin andmick is a very nice and caring person me and my children have been to his house many times before and have always been welcome the guns have all ways been locked up securly with no danger to my self or children you shouldnt belive what is said in the papers a lot of it is over rated.

Anonymous said...

Mick Shephard was a REGISTERED GUN DEALER, not a drug dealer with a gun. I shoot with Mick and his friends at Dartford clay shooting ground and you could not have met a nicer guy. I’ve also been to Mick’s home and yes he liked guns, but don’t we all collect something?

Mick was well known by the police, his home and guns were checked by them four times a year so why the raid? Don’t the police have any consideration for his family.

Mick’s guns and firearms were in a VERY SECURE and LOCKED gun room, only deactivated, replica and old legal weapons were on display.

The way his prise guns were man handled and taken away by the police was totally out of order, most of these guns were from auctions and cost £1000’s.

I would just like to wish Mick and his family all the best and I hope this stupid misunderstanding can by put right. I also think the police owe an apology.

Anonymous said...

are we talking about the same mick shepard ie micks guns
micks home town was in usa.
something is wrong here.;

Anonymous said...

The Good Shepherd

“Elvis has left the building” rang the announcement on The Old Bailey tannoy as 4’ 11” Mick Shepherd stepped out into the street a free man for the first time in ten months. Mick had become a minor celebrity at the famous central criminal courts during the month of June, as he entered the dock daily, regaled with western shirt, coiffed Elvis quiff and his own very personal sense of style. “What’s he in The Old Bailey for; crimes against fashion?” posted one wag on a shooting website forum early in the trial. However, the ribbing hides a far more disturbing truth. Mick Shepherd was facing extremely serious charges in the highest court in the land and those charges related to the ownership and sale of firearms.

First some background. Mick Shepherd is 56, a carpenter by trade and a Registered Firearms Dealer with Kent police of longstanding. He has been collecting and dealing in antique guns for some thirty years and has one of the best collections in the country. Mick was a regular face at Hawley Gun Club, where he would straight the Skeet range every Sunday with a relic from the 1860s or an orange plastic-stocked pump gun. He was well-known at the Sporting Guns auctions held at Bonham’s, Sotheby’s, Holt’s and Christie’s, where he regularly bought old guns.

His famous website was visited by thousands of enthusiasts from around the world and that is how I came to meet the man. I was researching a book and discovered that Mick had examples of guns I had only read about or seen sketched in patent drawings. A phone call later and I was welcomed into his home and given access to as many of the guns as I wanted to photograph – he even let me shoot them and later, when I was displaying guns at various game fairs, Mick would let me borrow what I fancied and return it when I had finished with it. He was instantly warm, generous and trusting. As he said on his website, one of the bonuses of his hobby was the friends he made through it.

Later, Mick invited me to join him on his annual trip to the Baltimore Antique Arms Fair in the USA. I wrote the story of the trip as an article for Gun Mart. Now an ‘underworld armourer’, as the police claimed Mick to be, would hardly invite a journalist to write of his shady gun-buying jaunts in the biggest selling gun magazine in the country would he?

Little did either of us suspect one evening in September 2006, as I returned some guns I had borrowed and we shared a glass of Coke (Mick does not drink), that all Hell was about to break loose. Hell came in the form of a dawn knock at the door with a Sky News helicopter circling and the tabloid press already massed. Operation Trident had come to call and its officers stood outside Mick’s Dartford home making ludicrous pronouncements about guns being ‘taken off the streets’ and the public being saved from ‘untold misery’ from the ‘hundreds of illegal guns’ they had discovered. Operation Trident only had to ask Kent police what guns Mick had because they not only checked his register annually; they gave him a good number of them!

The truth is that Operation Trident officers either knew they were telling lies or are so incompetent that they should be sent back to Hendon for re-training. The tabloids loved it – the front page of the London Evening Standard screamed of the ‘Biggest haul of illegal guns in Met history’ The Mirror called it an ‘Arsenal of Murder’. The articles were illustrated with photographs of Webley air pistols labelled as ‘illegal handguns’ and Mick went to Belmarsh.

The charges presented to the court numbered twenty three but by the time they got to the jury only twelve were left. The judge dismissed the rest early in the trial when it became clear that the charges were patently ridiculous; at one point demanding that the prosecution provide a firearms certificate they retained from a person whose guns were in Mick’s possession. It showed that Mick Shepherd was the authorised RFD named as their preferred holder of the guns they charged him with possessing illegally. By this time both judge and jury seemed exasperated with the prosecution case and the spurious charges that they insisted on pushing, in a ‘scattergun’ approach to getting Mick convicted of something.

By the time the judge had thrown out the blatantly baseless charges, the jury were left with twelve. These were multiple charges of selling a Section 58 firearm as well as the bullet heads and cases to match. They added to the charge that some of these guns ‘could also chamber’ a modern round of some type. Because of this they claimed that the guns were sold as Section 5 firearms rather than Section 58 antiques.

The defence claimed quite rightly that it is perfectly legal to sell Section 58 antiques and it is also perfectly legal to sell components for ammunition – heads and cases, wads, primers, etc. The fact that a Section 58 antique can be loaded with modified modern ammunition is irrelevant. For example, an 8-bore shotgun is considered Section 58 despite the fact that it can chamber a cartridge that is widely available. If you want to use it, you must put it on your shotgun certificate. Otherwise, the offence is only committed when one buys functional ammunition and tries to use it.

Mick was the subject of a police ‘sting’ (called ‘entrapment’ in the USA and illegal but allowed here). Undercover officers visited Mick and bought Section 58 antiques and bullet heads and cases. Mick told them they were not allowed to use them or make ammunition. They claimed he knew they wanted to use them for illegal purposes.

The jury decided there was no case to answer and announced that Mick was ‘not guilty’ of all charges. The police had nothing to say but that they presented their evidence and respected the jury’s decision. What they must now explain is why they brought this prosecution, why they did not better inform themselves of the law or take reliable expert advice, why they insisted on keeping Mick on remand in Belmarsh for ten months at huge expense to the tax payer and why the public is now picking up the bill for two QCs, four weeks at The Old Bailey and the substantial damages that Mick surely now deserves in compensation for losing almost a year of his life.

Can we now expect to see the return of Mick’s firearms and RFD certificate? Since all the charges have proven to be unfounded, one can see no reason why not. And his historically valuable collection of guns? I hope the police have looked after them with care and respect but the indications are not good. When removing them from Mick’s house, rather than use the keys to remove each one from the racks, they cut the racks off with angle grinders, leaving an unholy mess behind.

This article needs to be balanced by the fact that the police officers of Operation Trident are doing a serious and valuable job in investigating the almost weekly killings within the black community. For this work, we should applaud and support them. The officers from the unit that I met were sensible, personable and dedicated. The shooting community should remain a supporter of the police and on the whole it is.

Shooters are more law abiding, more scrutinised and licensed than most of the population. I believe that this case revolved around their ignorance of the law and too much of a fanfare at Mick’s initial arrest. It would have been too embarrassing to let him go without charge after all the fuss. It looks even more embarrassing now and within all the politics, we must remember that a man’s life, reputation, liberty and livelihood were at stake.

Anonymous said...

For all of you who are racially paranoid about Mick's nationality i'd like to say, not veryone who LOOKS Pakistani or Muslim IS!
This seeems to be the only thing on people's minds today since everyone pre-judges by the colour of ones skin.
Mick Shepherd is ANGLO-INDIAN like the UK's beloved Cliff Richard & Engelbert Humperdinck.
Anglo-Indians are Christian, law abiding and fought for Britain during the War.
They were part Indian & part European (either Portugese, Spanish, French or British)
They are only a small community and have NO affiliation to terrorism, Islam or even traditional Indian customs.

Unknown said...

Gurkhas are generally appreciated as being british supporting even though they are not generally Christian and have "stupid" names. Commentry is one thing - racism quite another.

Anonymous said...

From what I can see, the police used Mick sheperd as a scapegoat, as they can't or won't (probably because the real criminals pay them) find the real underworld armourers. on holiday in Texas in 1996, we passed many gunshops offering ex uk handguns for sale at attractive prices. As the Dunblane thing was fresh in our minds we were amazed that all the handguns taken from law abiding brits, and shown by the uk media as being destroyed, were actually being containerised and shipped to the USA for sale! One gunsmith told us he could buy these handguns, in good condition, as legal gun owners treat their equipment with respect, cheap, and make a tidy profit. Two years later, I got my first shotgun certificate, and was bought a gun (I was only 14) from a gunshop in Ruthin, North Wales. The poor chap there had all his stock of target pistols taken,his livelihood, worth as much as 20 thousand a piece by the police, and was still awaiting compensation as late as 2002! this country is going to the dogs fast, as we have a bunch of do gooders on the sidelines, steering any government we have into oblivion.

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