Man pleads guilty to possessing firearms

A Dublin man with an interest in guns faces community service work and a fine later this year for possessing firearms and ammunition he bought legally in South Africa.

Billy Nolan (aged 26) of Lily's Court, Ongar Green, Blanchardstown pleaded guilty to possessing a Baretta hand gun, a tin of hawk pellets, two shotgun cartiledges, five .22 bullets and another black airpistol in his apartment on September 14, 2006. He has no previous conviction

Nolan told gardaí after they seized the weaponary that he bought them during a trip to South Africa with his wife and had them as decorations in his apartment.

"I didn't buy it with a purpose. I just thought it looked cool."

Detective Garda David Tormey agreed with defence counsel, Mr Colman Fitzgerald SC, in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court that the ammunition was incompatible with the airpistols siezed and that his client had the bullets arranged decoratively on his living room mantlepiece.

Detective Garda Tormey further agreed that although Nolan knew the weapons were illegal in Ireland and could injure a person, he didn't think he would end up in court if he were caught with them.

He told prosecuting counsel, Mr Colm O Briain BL, that gardai also seized a false driving license in the name of "Gerard Cully" with another person's photo ID, which Nolan explained he "found with a few other licenses."

Judge Tony Hunt said he was satisfied there were "no sinister overtones in this case" and remanded Nolan on bail to be sentenced to community service and a fine in October.


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