MP40 found in Australia

These news items are always so interesting when they come up, as if to say “Dear god, a working firearm!” Anyways, in Sydney, Australia apparently some criminals were stashing a modified No.4 Lee Enfield and an MP40 in an abandoned house, intending to do criminal deeds with them. And a 1911A1 with aftermarket grips, but that isn’t as interesting as the MP40. Personally I think they must have been some pretty low rate criminals if all they could get their hands on were World War Two small arms. Nonetheless, the interesting thing about the MP40 is the flash hider had somehow been added, either as a modification to the muzzle parts that disassemble, or simply welded/jammed on somehow. There was also no mention of ammunition in the article. I tried to find even experimental MP40 muzzle devices on the internet, but to no avail. Try not to read into the article too deeply, the terminology errors are somewhat strong with this one. From the news report over at Nine News

Police allege they found a Nazi Germany-era MP-40 submachine gun, a .22 caliber bolt action rifle with a scope and a .45 caliber Colt 1911 automatic pistol.

The weapons have been sent for further ballistic examination.

Last week’s find has disturbed counter terrorism police.

“These are highly lethal firearms that someone has stashed away with the intent to use when they deem the time is right,” Terrorism Investigation Squad Commander Darren Bennett said.


The original pictures have been rotated sideways so that explains the odd composition of the picture. Anyways, standard 1911A1 here, except with a nickeled slide and some sort of white grips. The police seem to have locked back every firearm’s bolt except the 1911s, did they not know how? 


.303 Lee Enfield No.4 with an added scope mount and civilian variable power scope on top. 


Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

Please feel free to get in touch with me about something I can add to a post, an error I’ve made, or if you just want to talk guns. I can be reached at


  • Iggy

    I’d ignore the terrorism speculation, we’re going through a bit of a phase at the moment.
    As for the inevitable ‘criminals will always find guns people’ (not arguing there) this would be just as illegal in the US without paperwork (your opinion on whether or not that should be so notwithstanding).

    • anon

      LOL, you don’t need paperwork for most guns in many US states. I bought a glock34 in a gas station parking lot off a guy for $500 cash with no paperwork (other than a receipt that will be kept for my records and handed in to no government agency) last weekend. Perfectly legal.

      I also pride myself on the fact that in my state it is a crime to register guns.

      Freedom is awesome.

      • On most freedom indices, Australia ranks higher in freedom than the USA.

        • SpazC

          …. just looked at those, most of those apply to economic freedoms.

          Australia’s Rights to Privacy, Speech, Self Defense, Press, ect ( Think our Bill of Rights) Seem to fall behind the US.

          • FarmerB

            Yes, no comparison – Australia is basically a fairly ‘illiberal’ place – in a liberal sort of way. For example, I once saw a woman wearing a tee-shirt in Sydney that said “So many men, so few bullets”. Just adding one of any number of single words to that meme would get her into serious, jail threatening problems (of course, white straight males are fair game).

        • Sianmink

          If I read that site correctly, all they really factor in is economic freedom, which is why countries like Singapore and Hong Kong rank so highly, and why UAE is just barely behind the States.

          • Uhh… they factor in gov spending, fiscal freedom, business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom, trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom, property rights, and freedom from corruption.
            Sure, the USA beats them on a few things, but even the democracy index places them ahead of the United States. But yes, firearms are more restricted there and I realize that they will be at the forefront of what most people here (self not withstanding) consider the embodiment of freedom.

          • Sianmink

            Aren’t those nearly all economic factors? If it was overall, there’d be things like travel freedom, speech, racial/class equality, medical choice, political activism…

        • Hail Mohammed

          _Economic_ freedom. I think I’ll take 50% of the economic freedom that one would have had in the Austro-Hungarian empire a hundred years ago, plus actual personal freedoms, rather than 55% of the pre-demotic norm without the personal freedom.

          Australia has some pretty disgusting anti-free speech laws on the books. Not as bad as Britain or China, or worse offenders like Germany, but people have been slammed with livelihood-crippling fines for pretty modest realtalk.

        • anon

          So free that body armor is considered a dangerous weapon.

          Body armor
          Dangerous weapon

          • Tassiebush

            I agree we live under some very unreasonable restrictions down here. I certainly don’t support our gun laws and I agree with and envy the freedoms enjoyed around firearms in the USA, but a lot of different freedoms matter and to point out some problems in America’s own backyard you guys have some crazy restrictions in some parts of the country. Examples like people being jailed for failing to maintain healthy lawns of the right species of grass or a part of Virginia where you aren’t allowed to hang up washing outside or just how restricted boating is like registering freaking canoes in some spots. Freedom is important across the board.

          • Zebra Dun

            Yup, here if you slap an electric motor on a 16 foot canoe you must have a permit, and a number splashed across your bateau like it was a ski boat.

          • MichaelZWilliamson

            Those are homeowner community agreements gone nuts. Virtually all of them fail any sort of appeal, though they’re binding CIVIL agreements per contract.

            But the MP40 would require federal papers, regardless of what state one is in.

            The picture above fails for not having a rebel flag.

      • Tassiebush

        I reckon Iggy is just referring to the mp40

        • Iggy


  • J. Moon

    That is one of the most attractive enfields I’ve ever seen.

  • SP mclaughlin

    Those “aftermarket” grips on the 1911A1 look like cut wax paper lol

  • JQPub

    Oh man, that Lee Enfield is sweet. Stock is in great shape. I’ll give ya $500 for it, Aussie hoplophobes!

    • Tassiebush

      I saw a real nice No4 one at my local shop for$550 the other day. Lol that amount of money is pretty much, “right on the money” lol!

      • Tassiebush

        Oh unless that’s a trainer model in .22lr in which case my observation on price is probably way off.

  • Spencerhut

    The “grips” on the 1911 look like a plain sheet of aluminum cut to size with tin snips. Obviously a gun pieced together from a mix of parts.

    • jpcmt

      Yep, that’s what it is. Strips of aluminum…or as they’d say ‘aloominium’.

      • SpazC

        don’t you mean “Aloo-Minny-Um” 🙂

        • Tassiebush

          Exactly how it’s meant to be said 😉

          • SP mclaughlin

            Schedule or shed-juu-wal?

          • Tassiebush


          • sam


      • checkmate440

        Correct…A-loo-mi-num not AL-U-MINI-UM lol Good Day Mate

        • Tassiebush

          Nah mate it’s definitely the latter not the former. You guys just don’t quite say it right. And don’t get me started with the way you guys root for teams! 😉

          • Nobody

            It was named in the US first, friend. but the -ininininium was added because there were other -inium elements and people across the pond couldn’t wrap their heads about an -inum, without the extra iuiuniums in it.

          • Tassiebush

            I just looked into it and it seems it was actually discovered and named in Britain first by Cornish scientist Sir Humphry Davy. But yes it seems he did use the spelling Americans/Canadians now use back in 1812. The other spelling now used everywhere else apparently sprung up in 1812 in a review of his work as a suggested name for it, to make it sound more classical.

    • Tassiebush

      There used to be parts kits for sale here via mail order with all parts except for the frame. No licence was needed for that kit so if it was an old cobbled together gun that would make sense.

  • Vitsaus

    More history to be destroyed.

    • sam

      yep, iconoclasm.

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    I almost feel sorry for Australian criminals.

  • J.T.

    That MP40 is in really good shape.

  • smartacus

    “.22 caliber bolt action rifle with a scope”
    That sounds like one evil and sinister Crickett.

    • ozzallos .

      …Stashed away for when the time is right, no doubt. Seriously.

      • FarmerB

        Seriously, when the 1996 gun-ban hysteria was in full flight, you could not buy PVC piping for more than six months – it was simply unavailable.

        • Tassiebush

          I used to love the tales of buried shipping containers and also the booby trapped pvc tubes with gelignite in one end.

      • MichaelZWilliamson

        If you have to bury your guns, the time IS right to use them.

    • Well, there is a reason they call large sections of PVC pipe “Australian gun safes”.

      Take a metal detector to Queensland and I bet you would make Nicholas Cage in Lord of War look like a chump, lol.

      • iksnilol

        Problem is getting them out of the country… and trust me, people in the Balkans don’t like you wandering around with a metal detector.

    • Bob

      Military sniper rifle. /sarc

      • Hank Seiter

        … 12 ga. pump/semi-auto trap guns are “street sweepers” and .22 pistols are “assassins’ weapons of choice.” The day is coming.

  • Sianmink

    “The police seem to have locked back every firearm’s bolt except the 1911s, did they not know how?”
    Looks like they put in a chamber flag.

    • Total boot move on my part, I actually didn’t even notice that.

  • Tassiebush

    On the flash hider with the MP40 I am speculating that it might have been to bring total length to over 25″ to make it legal. Before the gun laws changed in the 90s machine guns were legal in my state of Tasmania without registration etc. Heck in the 80s I don’t think a licence was even needed. Firearm length was the only restriction. Only handguns needed a licence. I think some other states had registration and licencing much earlier than this. Queensland might have had similar freedoms to us though?! I remember seeing belt fed machine guns for sale in the newspaper. I have really need a Delorian.

    • James in Australia

      States varied quite a bit pre 96.Tassie had by far the most liberal laws. I knew of a few Victorians with legal full autos in the early 80’s but that all changed after 87, though they are still technically legal if you can get a E category license.

      • Tassiebush

        Wow I hadn’t even heard of an E licence. I thought D was as good as it gets. Damn if I’d known we used to have the best laws here I’d have nagged dad harder to get something especially cool!

        • James in Australia

          Nothing is banned outright in Victoria…If you can get the license.That’s the rub, how can you justify the need etc.
          Used to Know a Girl from Hobart who kept an Owen Gun under her bed, no permit ,no license, no problem.

          • Tassiebush

            What a fantastic girl! Gee how’d you find out it was there? 😉
            Yeah it’s funny the very politicians who created more restrictive categories use the term ban but like you say it’s more that the accepted justification is very restrictive. Actually one thing Victoria had on Tas was silencers. You guys had them while we didn’t. Or was that another state?

          • Adam

            Your thinking of South Australia… Uno Brow at SA Sportsgoods manufactured about 500,000 GSA suppressors…

          • Tassiebush

            Thanks for clarifying that!
            Btw how did those thin jacketed .300blackout projectiles you were making turn out? I remember you were developing it for pig shooting with suppressor.

          • Adam

            Very nicely..But next batch of 1.40 inch cups will be dropping from 0.016 down too 0.012.. that should give me a final weight of 265 grain softpoint..Almost finished a new lead wire press that takes a 46 mm x 205 mm lead ingot..And went out and bought a EDM machine so i can make my own carbide swage dies, ive been waiting 3 years and got told im still looking at 18 months,.. Did you ever do anything with a martini?

          • Tassiebush

            No I haven’t started that Martini one yet. Certainly haven’t forgotten though. It’s a good idea that definitely fits my needs well.

          • iksnilol

            For some reason that reminded me of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels:

            “What’s that? – It’s me Bren Gun.”

            Yeah, I wouldn’t be surprised if unlicensed arms outnumber licensed and “permitted” arms. At least that’s what my personal experience tells me.

          • Zebra Dun

            Nice gal.
            There must be a rhyme in that somewhere.

    • Greg

      There is a firm in Ft. Meyers that sells Delorian’s. They have about 10-12 of them on there lot. Fixer uppers for 10k US to 40K decked out.

      • H.C.

        Unless any of them have a flux capacitor, they aren’t going to do him any good.

      • billybob

        Regular DeLoreans are not gonna take him back in time! There’s a song in there I think.

    • SAMMY

      Appears to have been constructed from a Grease-Gun flash-hider

    • Ironwulf

      Tassie: You make me wish I lived ‘down under’, In America. machinegun ownership has been regulated since 1934. And more stringently with the GCA of 1968. Totally sucks. The final stand will be “WE, the people” against tyranny – not thugs.

      • Tassiebush

        It’s drastically different now of course. Guns are quite restricted these days. A time machine is definitely required to make use of that opportunity.

        • Ironwulf

          I have an Aussie friend (Nurse) who is greatly concerned with the recent rise of crime there and most of it directed on home owners by thugs. Then I read of the Muslim terror beginning there. I have to hope that your politicians are wiser than ours, but then, they wouldn’t be politicians would they ?

          • Tassiebush

            It’s still a very safe place in my state. Pretty much always has been though. Our local Muslim community seem to just be hard working friendly people too. Having said that in Sydney there’s a bit of a gang problem involving the Muslim community particularly from Lebanese and Afghan groups. They prey on each other a lot (lots of drive bys) but also do pose a problem to broader community. Other significant problem is bikie gangs. They’re aggressively taking over drug distribution networks. In fact they seem linked with middle Eastern crime gangs. To be honest though I think it’s a tiny scale of problem compared to some of the gangs and crime problems in US.
            We’ve had a bunch of thwarted terror attacks and a couple of lone wolf incidents.

  • Larry

    What about that evil looking radio in the last pic? That antenna could poke an eye out, I bet they killed at LEAST 25 puppies with it! No telling how many infants the blood crazed criminals executed in their back yards with these weapons of mass destruction, good thing all the cute adorable puppies and infants can sleep easy NOW! Thanks Australian authorities, my puppies and infants can all come out of their panic rooms, It was starting to smell funny in there! (lol)

    P.S. The flash hider on the sub-machine gun of mass destruction looks like one you might find on an enfield jungle carbine doesn’t it? Just rite to hide the flash of puppy execution, …jerks! (lol J/k those make huge flashes)

    • Tassiebush

      Yeah I reckon it’s a jungle carbine flash hider.

      • Mark Stapleton

        Yes def no 5 SMLE Jungle Carbine flash hider , lots of cadet units used 22 versions of the Lee Enfield , 45 grips are very amateur ?? . This looks like gear typically hoarded by bikies involved in drug distribution would have . it’s very difficult to get hold of long arms that are semi auto over here let alone full auto so the police would have been concerned at a machine gun .

    • Hank Seiter

      I’m more concerned about the paper document the 1911 rests on. Don’t the authorities know how viciously lethal paper cuts can get when they get infected?

  • S. Cautela

    Have to disagree that they must have been low rent criminals to only have access to a WWII automatic weapon. Whitey Bulger who was one of the most powerful mobsters in Boston during his reign had WWII trophy automatics in his weapons caches and used them in murders. Criminals routinely using state of the art Class III weapons is largely a convention of Hollywood. (My favorite was in the film “Four Brothers” when a squad of street level thugs attacked the protagonists in broad daylight with a dozen state-of-the-art HK G36 rifles.)

    • iksnilol

      I would say they are pretty low rent. Consider the time Whitey Bulger was active. In his days the Thompson and BAR were pretty much state of the art.

      Nowadays if you have the same amount of power and money you would have M4s, HK416s, G36s and whatnot.

  • mikee

    Spot on – a ‘military stash’ of a WWII Australian soldier. This happens from-time-to-time. North Africa campaign souvenir !

    • Tassiebush

      I reckon the most memorable campaign souvenir was that Gallipoli veteran who’s surviving relatives found a mumified Turkish soldier’s head. I don’t know where you’d even start trying to return something like that tactfully.

      • Zebra Dun

        “Oh That?, It’s me door stop.”

  • Adam

    Didnt anyone notice that the 1911 frame is a early Diecast replica frame? The Flash hider reminds me of one of the Flashiders on the old Universal Para model M1 carbine… As for that MP40, Still would have cost them $5-6000 all day long… Hell, Brens go for $10 K

  • Zebra Dun

    That flash hider, wasn’t a French Submachine gun used in Vietnam (as this MP-40 probably was and picked up there) have a flash hider just like it?

  • Ohiogunr

    We call them DEMOCRATS here in the U.S.! They have been blathering the same anti-gun , Anti-self Defense nonsense for years. They made a mistake here though, and acceded in allowing the proliferation of Licensed Concealed Handgun carry. Low and Behold, the people LIKED having the ability to resist crime. What was only one little State (Vermont) a couple decades ago, has swept America, with licensed law abiding citizens carrying guns everywhere they go. NO “Wild West shootouts or road rage incidents , no blood running in the streets. It is now becoming painfully clear to Americans that the places where WE are not allowed to defend ourselves are the places where crime occurs. Yet our Democrats , Like YOUR Australian politicians , refuse to see the truth! In our Constitution, the freedom of speech is the number one ensconced right. The truth is a powerful weapon for freedom! Keep spreading the truth, perhaps Planet Earth can reverse the damage done by the anti-gun forces of tyranny!

    • FarmerB

      Yes, but the lesson of places like Australia is that the biggest danger might come from the “conservative” side.

  • Ryan

    Looks a bit like the flash hider from a few versions of the M1 Carbine. Late WWII – Korean war era. Maybe they just welded it on? Hard to tell from the pic. Have to wonder why really? In that barrel length a 9mm should burn off all its powder, correct?

  • Jarhead0369

    Sadly, they will now likely be destroyed.

  • squareWave

    I hope they’ll at least allow a museum to take the MP40.

  • AD_Rtr_OS

    Is that a flash-hider from an Enfield #5?

  • Alan

    Poor criminals, owning a historical artifact that would be worth about $25,000 in the U.S.

  • DCSingles

    Bwahahaha. The populous nutered themselves in 96 and now fear everything but their own shadows. Have sling shots been put on the banned list there yet? Supersoakers? Surely someone’s planing to take over the world or some other dastardly deed with that archaic 1911. Can’t trust themselves with antiques. Is it because they were a prison colony?

    • Tassiebush

      I wouldn’t say the populous. Just enough of a majority to make it law given the absence of any kind of constitutional barrier. Comments like yours annoy me because I strongly doubt those who make them can take any personal credit for their good fortune.

  • fff

    maybe they simply wanted to not have the police steal their firearms.

  • RPK

    I would love to find a long lost MP-40 in my own collection!