Russell Herbert Smith pleaded guilty at Clermont Magistrates Court on April 14 to possession of unregistered firearm.
Russell Herbert Smith pleaded guilty at Clermont Magistrates Court on April 14 to possession of unregistered firearm.

Clermont man charged over unregistered ‘family heirloom’

A Central Queensland mine worker was found in possession of an unregistered firearm, which was described as a family heirloom.

Clermont police attended the Laglan Road address of Russell Herbert Smith, 43, on February 27 for another matter, but while talking to him they noticed an air rifle leaning against the wall in the lounge room.

Smith, who was the holder of a weapons licence, told police it was an old gun that wasn’t registered and made a quip to police that he’d probably get charged for it being there.

They took the air rifle and further investigation showed it was not recorded in the register of Queensland Police.

Smith pleaded guilty at Clermont Magistrates Court on April 14 to possession of unregistered firearm.

Duty lawyer Carly Guilfoyle said her client, who worked at Blair Athol Mine, had owned the air rifle since he was a boy.

She told the court it was in the lounge room with photos and other memorabilia, although it was seized up and not in working order.

Magistrate Robert Walker acknowledged that Smith was a licensee, who seemed to be a law abiding and upstanding citizen.

But Mr Walker said he should have known the weapon, which fell into the category of a family heirloom, needed to be registered.

“In those circumstances, this is not a particularly bad example of the offence,” he said.

Smith was ordered to a four month good behaviour bond. No conviction was recorded.

Originally published as Clermont man charged over unregistered ‘family heirloom’