Passionate gun collector and firearms licence holder Roy Bennett, aged 71, was given a five-year sentence for possessing illegal firearms recently.

Bennett was living in a farm cottage, near Rochdale, when he amassed the guns.

He pleaded guilty to nine firearms offences at Bolton Crown Court.

A passionate gun collector, Bennett said he found one of the shotguns in the attic of his house when he moved in, and bought another at a car boot sale for just £1, where it was being sold as a cigarette lighter.

He had also built a miniature cannon himself and police were alerted to its existence when he fired it at a local gun club.

A Greater Manchester Police’s firearms officer said it “sends out a very clear message to firearms and shotgun certificate holders”.

Talk to other readers about the state of the UK’s firearms laws.

  • C.G. Valentine

    This sentence is completely over the top. For possessing a couple of shotguns, which pose no threat to the community, a 71 year old is given 5 years at Her Majesties Pleasure. He would quite easily end his life behind bars. I take it that he did hold a Shotgun Certificate and that the possession of the unregistered shotguns is then more of an administrative offence than possession with the intent of committing a crime with them.

  • jp

    The message it sends?
    That our authorities are insane?

  • Mark

    Bloody police bloody courts,,,,cops should be arresting real crims like the scum who sell golly wogs… Just a joke a sick joke…

  • Simon Mansell

    And what clear message does this send out might I ask?

    The message that a 71 year collector get five years when his life expectancy is 12.91 years according to mortality tables! Half a life sentence! And who may I ask was harmed by the collector? No-one!

    So tell me how long I’d get is I glassed someone in a fight or kicked a police officer and beat my wife?

    I’m affraid to say this bring law and order in disrepute.

  • Swede

    The UK is a joke country. Thank god for the french, swiss and scandinavians.

  • John Bonny

    FIVE YEARS?
    At 71?
    Sends out a very clear message, the law is a joke and the people who enforce it are idiots.
    You don’t get five years for manslaughter.