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This weapon haul was legal in UK homes until last week

Until last week a haul of weapons like this was legal to have in your home in England.

Recent changes in the law mean it is illegal and can be up to 10 years in prison for the items now.

But Jamie Mee got off lightly as he was arrested in 2019 and only been found guilty this year.

He got into a heated argument with his female friend about a large electricity bill. 

He was alleged to have assaulted her in the “dispute” and the police were called to their Kirkby home.

When officers arrived at the address in Hawthorne Drive she told them her flatmate had weapons in his bedroom. 

Prosecutors said that was an “understatement” as police discovered a vast collection of legal and illegal weapons. 

It included guns, knives, machetes, crossbows, no less than 48 knuckledusters – some fitted with blades – and a cosh. 

None of those items seized, including a deactivated handgun and an air rifle, are illegal to have in your own home.

But inside an ammunition box on the landing the 32-year-old also had a charged up stun gun, a CS spray canister and a capsaicin pepper spray – all of which are illegal. 

Police have now released a gallery of photos showing the astonishing assortment of weapons, which officers recovered on October 21 last year. 

Liverpool Crown Court heard police received reports of “possible domestic violence” after Mee “had become irate over a large electricity bill”.

Jamie Mee

Michael Stephenson, prosecuting, said there were no charges in respect of that allegation, adding: “The charge recommended was common assault.

By the time the police came to refer the postal requisition, the six months [time limit for charging] had elapsed.” 

The court heard the haul included 40 knuckledusters in a display cabinet and a further eight “bladed knuckle dusters” on top of a TV. 

Mr Stephenson said: “Of course, it’s not an offence to have knuckledusters in your home address.” 

Some weapons were said to be in a display cabinet and others in frames and hanging up on walls. 

Judge Gary Woodhall said: “Though hearing about that arsenal of weapons causes some consternation and concern, equally the way in which they were being held, the defence would say being displayed, is in his favour. 

Mr Stephenson said the Crown didn’t suggest Mee was maintaining an arsenal for his use.

He said: “It does look as though, strange as it was, it was a genuine collection.” 

In a pre-sentence report Mee told the Probation Service he was “relieved they had been taken”. 

The judge said he could order the forfeiture and destruction of the illegal weapons, but had no powers in relation to the rest of the collection.

Sarah Holt, defending, spoke to Mee, who voluntarily signed a “disclaimer” in court, agreeing that all of his collection could be disposed of. 

Mr Stephenson said the stun gun was charged up and could be used, but the Crown accepted “in view of his overall collection” it wasn’t likely Mee intended to use it, or the other weapons. 

Mee pleaded guilty to three counts of possessing a weapon for the discharge of a noxious liquid, gas, electrical incapacitation device or thing. 

He has four previous convictions for 12 offences, but none since he was 20.

Mee was spared jail for two counts of battery and one of criminal damage in 2008, but later that year locked up for two years for threats to kill.

Domestic related

Judge Woodhall said those offences were committed “in a domestic context”. 

Ms Holt invited the judge to follow the Probation Service’s recommendation and impose a community order. 

Judge Woodhall asked if Mee was “truly unfit for unpaid work” and Ms Holt said her client, who is on benefits, suffered from epilepsy. 

She said: “The fits, they do come as and when, there’s no particular time when they happen.

“Anxiety exacerbates them so he’s experienced the fits recently. He’s residing with his mother in Wales at the present time because of the problems it’s caused.”

Judge Woodhall said Mee told police he found the illegal weapons in an ammunition box when out walking his dogs, but told the Probation Service a friend gave him them because they knew about his collection, “none of which seems entirely plausible”.

The judge said: “He’s somebody who has a fascination with these sorts of weapons isn’t he?” 

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Ms Holt replied: “The fact is they were in his possession, with no intention to use them. These were not the typical sort of items he was collecting.

“How they came to be in his possession, his instructions are they were given to him by a friend.”

Judge Woodhall said Mee’s “friend and flatmate” told officers about the weapons.

He told him “the police found what might in other circumstances be said to be a particularly alarming collection of weapons”.

The judge said he had no powers in relation to the majority of the collection, including “a decommissioned revolver” and an air rifle, which wasn’t powerful enough to require a certificate. 

However, he said while the stun gun was non-lethal, its electric discharge could pass through clothes to shock, cause pain and leave marks. 

Judge Woodhall said Mee had a pattern of violent offending up to 2008, when he was aged 20.

He said a probation officer suggested his absence of crimes for 13 years was a result of him “having grown up, matured and the fact you have turned your back on the use of controlled drugs”.

The judge told Mee it was “very much to your credit” that he had signed away the collection, “which means they are out of circulation”.

Noting the “unusual” facts of the case, he said: “It seems to me it’s mitigation that you have disclaimed any right to have any of these weapons returned to you.” 

He sentenced Mee to a 15-month community order, a 20-day Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and a two-month home curfew, from 9pm to 6am daily.

Law change

As of yesterday (14 July), it is now illegal to possess certain dangerous weapons- even in your own home.

The aim of the Offensive Weapons Act 2019 is to bring in tough new measures that strengthen law enforcement’s response to violent crime.

It was already illegal to possess a knife or offensive weapon in public, but the Offensive Weapons Act makes it unlawful to possess certain rapid firing rifles, specific types of knives and other offensive weapons in private.

Some weapons covered in the ban include knuckledusters, zombie knives and death star knives.

Anyone unlawfully possessing a firearm covered by the ban will face up to 10 years in prison, and anyone who owns another weapon covered could face up to six months behind bars and a fine.

Soon, further parts of the act will come into play and you have to verify you are over 18 to buy bladed items from the internet.

You won’t be able to have bladed items delivered to a locker or other automated pick up point.

Items will be clearly labelled as bladed articles, and those delivering the items may ask you for proof of age.

National Police Chiefs’ Council lead on knife crime, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Graham McNulty, said: “The harm caused to families and communities through the tragic loss of life relating to knife crime is devastating and that is why focusing on this issue remains a top priority for policing.

“We welcome the changes to legislation being introduced by the Offensive Weapons Act.

“These measures will help officers to take dangerous weapons off the streets, deal with those intent on using them to cause harm and suffering, and crucially, make it more difficult for young people to get hold of knives and other dangerous items in the first place.

“Knife crime is not something that can be solved by policing alone. We are working with businesses, schools, charities and community schemes to educate young people and explain why carrying a knife is never the right choice.

ection 141 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 provides that it is an offence to manufacture, sell or hire, offer for sale or hire, expose or have in his possession for the purpose of sale or hire of or lending or giving to any other person certain specified weapons.

Here is a full list:

  • A knuckleduster, that is, a band of metal or other hard material worn on one or more fingers, and designed to cause injury, and any weapon incorporating a knuckleduster.
     
  • A swordstick, that is, a hollow walking-stick or cane containing a blade which may be used as a sword.
  • ‘Handclaw’- being a band of metal or other hard material from which a number of sharp spikes protrude, and worn around the hand.
     
  • ‘Belt buckle knife’- being a buckle, which incorporates or conceals a knife.
     
  • ‘Push dagger’, being a knife, the handle of which fits within a clenched fist and the blade of which protrudes from between two fingers.
     
  • ‘Hollow kubotan’, being a cylindrical container containing a number of sharp spikes.
     
  • ‘Footclaw’, being a bar of metal or other hard material from which a number of sharp spikes protrude, and worn strapped to the foot.
     
  • ‘Shuriken’, ‘shaken’ or ‘death star’, being a hard, non-flexible plate having three or more sharp radiating points and designed to be thrown.
     
  • ‘Balisong’ or ‘butterfly knife’, being a blade enclosed by its handle, which is designed to split down the middle, without the operation of a spring or other mechanical means, to reveal the blade.
     
  • ‘Telescopic truncheon’, being a truncheon which extends automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring or other device in or attached to its handle.
     
  • ‘Blowpipe’ or ‘blow gun’, being a hollow tube out of which hard pellets or darts are shot by the use of breath.
     
  • ‘Kusari gama’, being a length of rope, cord, wire or chain fastened at one end to a sickle.
     
  • ‘Kyoketsu shoge’, being a length of rope, cord, wire or chain fastened at one end to a hooked knife.
     
  • ‘Manrikigusari’ or ‘kusari’, being a length of rope, cord, wire or chain fastened at each end to a hard weight or hand grip.
     
  • A disguised knife, that is any knife which has a concealed blade or concealed sharp point and is designed to appear to be an everyday object of a kind commonly carried on the person or in a handbag, briefcase, or other hand luggage.
     
  • A stealth knife, that is a knife or spike, which has a blade, or sharp point, made from a material that is not readily detectable by apparatus used for detecting metal and which is not designed for domestic use or for use in the processing, preparation or consumption of food or as a toy.
     
  • A straight, side-handled or friction-lock truncheon (sometimes known as a baton).
     
  • A sword with a curved blade of 50 centimetres or over in length; and for the purposes of this sub-paragraph, the length of the blade shall be the straight line distance from the top of the handle to the tip of the blade.
     
  • “Zombie knife”, “zombie killer knife” or “zombie slayer knife”, being a blade with — (i) a cutting edge; (ii) a serrated edge; and (iii) images or words (whether on the blade or handle) that suggest that it is to be used for the purpose of violence.
     
  • “Cyclone knife” or “spiral knife”, being a weapon with — (i) a handle; (ii) a blade with two or more cutting edges, each of which forms a helix; and (ii) a sharp point at the end of the blade

Crossbow killer will serve at least 33 years for double murder

In a example of the dangers of crossbows this story from last year highlights that.

Three men have been jailed for life after two men were brutally killed with a crossbow during a cannabis farm burglary in Brierley Hill.

Saghawat Ramzan, his son Omar Ramzan, and Mohammed Sageer claimed they acted in self-defence when they brutally killed Khuzaimah Douglas, aged 19, and Saghawat’s own brother, Waseem Ramzan, aged 36.

The Ramzan’s lived next door to their professional and lucrative cannabis factory in Pensnett Road, Brierley Hill. Living just next door, they were able to keep a close eye on any potential risks, including those posed from other criminals. 

At 3.30am on 20 February last year, the house was raided by a group of around 10 people wanting to steal their crop. Knowing an attack of this kind was likely, the Ramzan’s had amassed a huge collection of weapons including a large panther crossbow , a smaller crossbow , a sword, knives and a knuckleduster.

Saghawat Ramzan and his son Omar rushed next door to see what was going on also calling Saghawat’s brother, Waseem who lived further down the street for help.

Armed with a crossbow and sword, Saghawat began to attack the raiders, he fired a shot from his crossbow which just missed. They tried to run away but one of the robbers, Khuzaimah, was caught by Waseem and wrestled to the ground.

At this point Mohammed Sageer arrived and joined in the attack. 

Khuzaimah struggled to free himself, but all three men attacked him and Saghawat reloaded his crossbow with a bolt and fired at almost point-blank range in the direction of Khuzaimah. He missed and hit his brother, Waseem, in the left side of his abdomen. CCTV showed Waseem remove the bolt from his body. 

Saghawat then reloaded his crossbow and took another shot which hit Khuzaimah just above his hip. He managed to struggle to his feet and ran off but collapsed across the road. The bolt had embedded in his pelvic bone, he suffered massive blood loss, and despite medical assistance, sadly died of his injuries at the scene.

Meanwhile, the others decided to get help for injured Waseem – he was taken by car to hospital. Saghawat left shortly after to tidy up the weapons and secure the property. The hospital called police due to the nature of the injuries as fortunately crossbow injuries are extremely rare.

Crossbow
An image of the crossbow

Saghawat gave a false account of what happened, telling officers he’d heard a commotion and found people attacking his brother.

In a bid to evade police, the trio stopped using their phones but Saghawat, aged 47, from Pensnett Road, was found at a property in Stoke on 23 February. The following day, his son Omar, aged 24, also from Pensnett Road, handed himself in telling officers he had acted in self-defence.

A similar account was made by Sageer aged 33, from Gorsty Avenue, Brierley Hill, who’d travelled to Scotland and then Bradford, before handing himself in on 25 February. All three were charged with murder.

Detective Chief Inspector Jim Munro, from our homicide team, said: “The actions of these three men were shocking, brutal and calculated.

“To protect their cannabis grow, they were happy to use extreme violence in a brutal and sustained attack on Khuzaimah. 

“We believe they wanted to send a clear message to the people who’d attempted to rob their cannabis factory. However, Saghawat also killed his own brother during the attack which further highlights their determination to cause serious harm and just how dangerous their weapons were.

“There is no place on our streets for violence like this or the armoury of weapons they chose to have and ultimately use. 

“Two lives have been lost because these men decided to use extreme violence in an attempt to protect their illegal drug business.”

  • Saghawat Ramzan, aged 47, was sentenced to a minimum term of 33 years for the murder of Khuzaimah Douglas and his own brother Waseem Ramzan.
  • Omar Ramzan, 24, who is the son of Saghawat and nephew of Waseem, was jailed for 22 years for the murder of Mr Douglas and the manslaughter of Waseem.
  • Mohammed Sageer, aged 33, has been jailed for 20 years for the murder of Mr Douglas and the manslaughter of Waseem.

A further investigation into the drugs element of the case is ongoing with a number of people charged with conspiracy to burgle. They are awaiting trial at a later date.

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