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Anyone can be a criminal in the UK, even when you do the right thing.

Find a gun, hand it in to the police and end up being charged with possessing a firearm.
Just by having the gun in his possession he was guilty of the charge, and has no defence in law against it

Paul Clarke, 27, was found guilty of possessing a firearm at Guildford Crown Court on Tuesday – after finding the gun and handing it personally to police officers on March 20 this year.
The jury took 20 minutes to make its conviction, and Mr Clarke now faces a minimum of five year's imprisonment for handing in the weapon.
In a statement read out in court, Mr Clarke said: "I didn't think for one moment I would be arrested.
"I thought it was my duty to hand it in and get it off the streets."

Prosecuting, Brian Stalk, explained to the jury that possession of a firearm was a "strict liability" charge – therefore Mr Clarke's allegedly honest intent was irrelevant.

Just by having the gun in his possession he was guilty of the charge, and has no defence in law against it, he added. There you go, its now official your all criminals, your all guilty of something so just hand yourselves in right now.
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6 people have spoken:

Anonymous said...

My dad recently had to go into a nursing home.
When clearing out his house I found a pistol he must hade kept from years ago when he used to go target shooting.
I was going to hand it in to the police, rather than risk it getting into the wrong hands.
I then had visions of all sorts of possible problems & the possibility of being DNAed just for handing it in.
So I didn't bother in the end, I took it to a nearby river and threw it in there.
So, this weapon is still out there because of my fear of the British Stasi.
Having read your story I think I made the right decision !

Jayce Kay said...

Ridiculous, a former soldier exercises some independent judgement that has undoubtedly saved lives (imagine, if you will what might have happened if it was a individual less experienced in handling firearms, messy eh?), then of his own volition bringing it to the attention of the Law, now faces five years in pokey, plus having a permanent criminal record against him for essentially doing the right thing.

Makes my piss boil.

The message is clear, think for yourself, but don't have anything to do with The Law.

Anonymous said...

Although totalitarian rule and making everyone a criminal might sound a bit extreme at first; if you think about it carefully, it at least settled the smoking problem as totalitarianism is designed at first to accomplish. And if it settled that, then hey - everyone should be all for it, don't you think. Too bad nobody ever debated the slippery-slope side of the equation back then. Better to have everyones' hair smelling pretty, whatever the eventual cost it always leads to.

James D said...

"Liability offences" are the 21st Century version of the 19th Century Court of Chancery. They obey no known rules of natural justice and are responsible for every social ill from third-rate supermarkets that fund the Labour Party refusing to sell wine to 30-year-olds to things like this. I hope that the Tories' bill of rights abolishes this absurd category once and for all.

banned said...

So what else is it also illegal merely to be in possession of ?

Anonymous said...

Be very slow to judge....see also this http://www.thisissurreytoday.co.uk/golf/Man-accused-attacking-DVLA-inspector-broom-walks-free/article-361380-detail/article.html

Same guy. Might be out to get him...Just might be he's a wrong'un..