NT Police trample over Court ruling
NO SHOOTER likes heavy handed regulators, and now we’re about to jump into a new fight with the NT Police who feel they can bypass due legal process for no reason other to get revenge.
It’s a fight shooters in other states have had with their regulators who feel they are above the law – and why we need to take this on and win.
It also comes hot on the heels of two other recent wins in NCAT and other wins we’ve had in other states.
On 11 February this year, Ron Sterry won his fight to get his licence back after it was taken off him when he went to help a stabbed neighbour.
There was one charge he was found guilty of (regarding a bayonet) but Judge Birch of the Alice Springs Local Court ruled that the police should return the bayonet and his licence to him, with nothing more than a good behaviour bond.
That’s because his actions were seen as being ‘reasonable’ and ‘proportionate’. It was a fair outcome.
On 15 March, and seemingly out of spite, NT Police raided his place on the pretext that Ron was harbouring illicit drugs.
We covered this story in this article and described the demeanour of police as nothing more than ‘sour grapes’.
What they didn't find
The police found nothing worth pursing. The chemical analysis revealed household items including chilli oil, vinegar, and even water.
The property receipt from police, which has only just been provided, revealed Ron had several replica firearms, including one of a “Steyr” and loose rounds of ammo.
Actually, that’s incorrect. Quite incorrect. The list includes a star wars prop (which was returned to him without charge) and ‘replicas’ which are Nerf guns (and which the Police have not yet returned).
The ‘ammo’ was in fact shells or dummy rounds, which had spent primers. Plus some air rifle pellets. Again, no charges.
Despite this, the police never actually got his registered guns that they came to take. They drilled holes in his safe but were stopped by Ron’s lawyer, Jon Bortoli.
Yet the NT police have now decided to revoke his licence – and seize his guns.
So why the revocation? What is it that Ron has done since then?
Here’s the reason given in the revocation notice:
In other words, the only ground for revocation is the matter that Judge Birch has already dealt with – where the judge specifically ruled that Ron’s licence was to be returned to him.
Logically if the NT Police want to try this on, then they could revoke any NT shooter’s licence for any matter that the NT courts have dealt with.
That’s why we need to fight this.
NSC re-engages Jon Bortoli
Once again we have hired NT barrister, Jon Bortoli, to represent Ron.
The advice we have received gives us confidence that this is a matter worth fighting.
While we don’t wish to yet reveal how this will be fought, we intend to win this out of principle – and we need your help.
Legal fights are expensive, but they're important
… and we’re winning.
We’ve already won cases in every state and territory other than the ACT (where we are yet to run a matter).
In the past couple of weeks alone, you have seen us win two cases in NSW to help a disabled shooter and a pensioner who simply showed his licence to someone else.
We’ve also got some ‘calibre’ cases in WA being decided soon which we are also confident about.
None of the decisions that have been made so far have been kind to the police. We are not against the police and indeed support them when they make the right decisions – but we have seen and focussed on decisions and policies that are patently unfair and unreasonable.
The behaviour of the NT Police to defy the NT legal system needs to be stamped out.
If we manage to do this, then it will help discourage other registries from doing the same – and encourage our forces to put their focus on where it needs to be – on real crime. Not Nerf guns.
That’s why we’re hoping for your support.
Please consider how you can support our fight to help Ron in this matter. If this is the first time you’ve heard of the NSC, why not join our email list using the sign up box below to find out more?