A Czech lorry/truck driver has been arrested by British police for attempting to smuggle a cache of illegal semi-automatic pistols into the UK from Europe. The suspect was arrested by UK Border Force officers in Killingholme, in Lincolnshire.
David Abeles, a 45-year-old Czech long-distance lorry driver, was stopped as he drove his truck off the ferry from the Netherlands on the 1st September. Police searched his vehicle and found 10 9x19mm Heckler & Koch P2000 pistols, individually wrapped with small packages of ammunition. In total over 250 rounds of ammunition were recovered.
The photographs made available of the pistols show P2000s with their serial numbers filed off but the proof markings for the pistol pictured above indicate it was proofed in Ulm in 2006. The Eagle/N marking indicates the pistol was originally sold commercially and was not a police pistol.
David Norris of the UK’s National Crime Agency said in a statement that:
Our investigation into this seizure is ongoing, but there is no doubt in my mind that these weapons would have found their way onto the black market and into the hands of criminals.
The level of gun crime in the UK is one of the lowest in the world, but the potential for harm caused by these weapons make eliminating the criminal use of firearms a priority threat for the NCA and UK law enforcement.
The NCA works internationally to disrupt the flow of firearms trafficked to the UK and Border Force is a vital partner in this work. This seizure was a great example of that in action.
The UK’s National Crime Agency also shared a, sadly extremely low resolution, photograph of the guns seized by police on their facebook page:
The Assistant Director of the UK Border Force’s Humber Command, Mark Robinson, said:
We are determined to prevent deadly weapons from reaching the UK’s streets. Detections like this demonstrate how Border Force officers are at the forefront of the fight to protect UK communities and individuals from such firearms.
As well as conducting checks on arriving passengers, vehicles and cargo, Border Force work with their fellow law enforcement partners, like the National Crime Agency, to detect and stop these type of weapons from entering the UK.
The suspect, Mr Abeles, will be remanded in custody until his court date on the 24th September.