Missing arsenal of guns 'was junk'

The Bolton News: Lancashire Gun Room in Halliwell Road. Picture from Google Maps. Lancashire Gun Room in Halliwell Road. Picture from Google Maps.

A PENSIONER has laughed off claims the owner of a gun shop described his arsenal of weapons “junk”, a court heard.

Frank Rushton, aged 83, giving evidence for a second day, tried to sell his 34 weapons to The Lancashire Gunroom in Halliwell Road, Halliwell.

He was no longer allowed to keep the guns because of a change to the law and had not renewed his registration to own them.

But days later it is claimed Cyrus Shahabi-Shack told him the items were taken from the shop by police during a raid.

The incident is alleged to have taken place in the summer of 2010. Mr Rushton became suspicious about 57-year-old Shahabi-Shack’s claim and sent an anonymous letter to police to ask whether the raid took place.

Nicholas Doherty, defending Shahabi-Shack, said: “I am going to suggest before you went back to the shop there was a phone call between you and Cyrus. He told you most of it was junk.”

Mr Rushton, who laughed before responding, said: “He was overwhelmed with the quality and the rarity.”

He added the people in the shop may not have been listening to him while he was on a visit to the store with his friend Catherine Clark because of their “goggle eyes at my lady friend”.

Mr Doherty suggested there were only about 10 guns, not 34 as suggested. Mr Rushton disagreed.

The jury previously heard Mr Rushton, a prosecution witness, claim Mr Doherty was trying to “blacken him as a witness”.

Mr Doherty claimed the pensioner did not tell Shahabi-Shack, of Lever Park Avenue, Horwich, that his weapons were prohibited.

Mr Rushton said: “I don’t use the word prohibited, it’s not in my vocabulary. I would have said illegal guns. Is that not enough? When they looked at them they would have seen they were prohibited.”

Shahabi-Shack told police when he was arrested January, 2012, that the weapons Mr Rushton had taken to him were not in working order and so he had destroyed them.

Shahabi-Shack, and Louis Larsson, aged 28, of Fossgill Avenue, Bradshaw, both deny three counts of conspiracy to possess firearms. In addition Shahabi-Shack denies possessing an illegal firearm.

The case continues.

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