Teen caught with guns and ammo after cannabis smell alerted police

Adam Martin told the court he found the firearms while jogging over Bushbury Hill.

Wolverhampton Crown Court, where Adam Martin was sentenced
Wolverhampton Crown Court, where Adam Martin was sentenced

A 19-year-old found with a sawn-off shotgun, revolver and ammunition for both weapons has been locked up for five years.

The car he was driving was halted in a routine police stop in Whitmore Reans, Wolverhampton, shortly before midnight on February 13, Wolverhampton Crown Court heard.

When the officers went to speak to Adam Martin and his passenger they smelt cannabis, prompting a search of the vehicle which unearthed the handgun in the glove compartment.

The weapon, initially intended to fire blanks, had been adapted to take rounds of ammunition, revealed Mr Howard Searle, prosecuting.

Police then scoured an address at Fairview Crescent, Wednesfield where the defendant was living at the time and discovered a rucksack in the bedroom that contained a sawn-off shotgun with ammunition for both that weapon and the pistol.

It remains unclear how he came by the guns.

Martin, whose only previous conviction was for two driving offences, told the court he found the cache of firearms while jogging over Bushbury Hill up to ten days before the police stop.

He confessed to being ‘stupid and naive’ in not reporting the find to the authorities but insisted he had no links to criminal gangs and had not tried to fire the weapons, although he admitted researching them on the internet.

Martin maintained he removed the rucksack from the spot where it was supposedly found to prevent it either being accidentally discovered by others or recovered by whomever had hidden it.

His claim to have been on the way to throw the unloaded revolver into the canal when stopped by the police was dismissed as a ‘pack of lies’ by Judge Dean Kershaw who added:

“I do not accept a word he has said and believe he acquired the weapons in full knowledge of what they were.

“I have a strong suspicion that someone else asked him to look after them and he is wrongly trying to protect whoever it was out of misplaced loyalty.

“The only reason for a person to have such an item is to cause real harm or make people fear real harm is about to be caused.

“I am sure the pistol was going to be used for a criminal purpose although without ammunition it would not have been to kill or maim.

“These weapons were either for his criminal purposes or those of somebody else.”

Martin, who has since moved to Pendower Road, Truro, admitted possession of two prohibited firearms.

Each offence carried a minimum sentence of five years but the judge said both terms would be served at the same time because of the age of the defendant who received five years detention in a Young Offenders Institution.

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