When the police searched a Coventry man’s home for drugs, they discovered a loaded semi-automatic pistol, together with a silencer and a number of live rounds of ammunition.
And Alistair McFadyen admitted he had been storing the lethal weapon and bullets for a dealer in return for drugs for his own use, a judge has heard.
McFadyen (23) of Lyndale Road, Coventry, was jailed for five years after pleading guilty to two charges of possessing prohibited firearms and one of possessing ammunition.
Graeme Simpson, prosecuting at Warwick Crown Court, said that on August 19 the police executed a warrant at McFadyen’s home to carry out a drugs search.
Some drugs were found, although McFadyen was not charged in relation to them after a far more sinister discovery by the police.
In a carrier bag under the sink they found a Glock 25 self-loading semi-automatic handgun, described as being ‘in perfect working order.’
There was also a sound suppressor, better known as a silencer, which is also classed as a firearm, and six live rounds in the gun’s magazine.
There was also a further round, but Judge Andrew Lockhart QC said it was not clear whether that had been loose or ‘up the spout’ and had been ejected when a firearms officer made the weapon safe.
Mr Simpson said that when McFadyen, whose previous convictions include and assault and a robbery, was interviewed, he said he had been acting as custodian of the gun for another man.
He explained he knew the other man, but had not seen him for a number of years until he turned up at his home two weeks earlier saying he was in trouble and asking him to store the gun.
Judge Lockhart commented: “Its only use could be unlawful – not by this man, but he was holding it for a drug supplier to return it, knowing it could be used to lethal effect.”
Ian Speed, defending, said: “He fully accepts this is going to be a custodial sentence, and a lengthy one.
“His payment for keeping it was in drugs. He’s a troubled soul, but a realistic one. He knows where he’s going.”
Jailing McFadyen, Judge Lockhart told him: “You became involved in the drug supply scene, whether or not you were a supplier.
“You were in possession of a prohibited firearm, a Glock pistol and a silencer and ammunition. Those are weapons that have no lawful use in our society.
“They are weapons that can only be used for criminal purposes, either to enforce drug debts or to rob banks or to shoot people dead.
“You knew you were holding that for a dangerous person, a drug dealer, and if he had asked for it you would have given it back, and he would have used it for a purpose which could not be lawful. This is a most lethal type of weapon.”