Officers are warning people of the risks of importing illegal weapons over the internet after a 40-year-old man was given a suspended jail sentence at Bristol Crown Court earlier today (9/1).
John Liddiatt, of Broad Walk, Knowle, was sentenced to a 12-month jail term suspended for a year, after admitting one count of purchasing/acquiring a prohibited weapon. He was also sentenced to 200 hours of unpaid work.
A brown parcel addressed to Liddiatt was intercepted at Heathrow Airport in January 2014, which was found to contain an electrical stun gun within a torch.
Officers from Avon and Somerset Police attended Liddiattâ€™s home in Knowle and found further devices â€“ including a stun gun disguised as an iPhone.
Liddiatt provided officers with receipts for the stun guns, which heâ€™d purchased through the I-Offer website from a seller originating in China.
Investigating officer PC Chris Downham said: â€œIt is imperative that items bought from abroad and imported into this country are legal according to UK laws.
â€œStun guns like the ones seized in this case are prohibited and dangerous weapons capable of causing considerable harm.
â€œItâ€™s the responsibility of the buyer to ensure they are complying with the law before ordering items over the internet.
â€œLiddiatt had tested the items when they arrived and was fully aware they were a viable working device.â€
Kate Greenslade, Force Armourer, said: â€œThe voltage of stun guns can range from 5,000 to over a million. They can be extremely dangerous, causing considerable pain, temporary muscle spasm and burns.
â€œStun guns, regardless of voltage or working condition, cannot be legally possessed in the UK.â€