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Fine for possessing air rifle

A FORTY nine year old man from Foula who possessed an air rifle with sentimental value to his family without having an air weapon certificate has been fined £300.

 Police found the rifle when they searched Kevin Gear’s home, at Veedal, on 15 February.

Defence agent Tommy Allan told Lerwick Sheriff Court on Thursday that his client had owned the rifle since he was 12 years old after a relative, who was a former special constable, gave it to him.

Gear, who previously admitted the charge, was told by police that he would need a licence for the rifle, but he went on holiday for a period of time and forgot to apply for the certificate.

Allan – who said police caused a “large amount of damage” to Gear’s door when they searched his property – asked if the rifle could have been signed over to his client’s father, who has a certificate.

The solicitor noted that Gear, who holds a number of community positions in Foula, had to pay for his travel to court as well as the damage to his door.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie said he understood the sentimental nature of the rifle but added that the practicalities of signing over the gun – which was unlawfully held by Gear – would be troublesome.

Sheriff Philip Mann fined Gear and granted a crown request for forfeiture of the rifle.

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