Drug addict Thomas Keatley who made illegal guns jailed after being stopped by armed police at Littlebrook Interchange near Dartford
Thomas Keatley has been jailed for eight years
A drug addict found to be manufacturing illegal guns after armed police discovered one in his car has been jailed for eight years.
Thomas Keatley was stopped in his Vauxhall Corsa on a slip road at the Littlebrook Interchange near Dartford on June 7.
He told officers: "I know why you're here."
Prosecutor Jonathan Polnay said a Forehand and Wadsworth double action revolver wrapped in a carrier bag was retrieved from the glove compartment. Almost £400 was also found.
Keatley said he bought the weapon from Ray Mills, a registered firearms dealer in Gravesend, for £475.
He added he was interested in guns as a hobby and planned to put it on the wall or lock it in a box.
He was barred from having a firearms licence because of criminal convictions. The gun, made between 1871-1890, was classed as an antique - but was not possessed as an ornament or curiosity, said Mr Polnay.
Keatley was charged and remanded in custody.
Police, meanwhile, used keys taken from the car to open a lock-up garage in Crawley, West Sussex, where the registered tenant was Keatley's mother Deborah. He lived at her home there.
A revolver found by police in Thomas Keatley's car
Mr Polnay said there were significant items there for use in the manufacture of firearms and ammunition.
"There was everything you would want to make bullets and firearms," he said. "In an ice cream box was an incomplete homemade pistol. He had manufactured a working pistol.
"Documents were found on a memory stick which was a plan of how to make that gun. The weapons have no conceivable lawful use whatsoever."
Also found was a bag containing 378g of cannabis with a street value of £1,890.
A lock-up garage in Crawley, West Sussex, used by Thomas Keateley
Mr Polnay said Keatley's bank statements showed a modest balance. But they also showed the purchase of gun-making equipment on the internet.
Keatley was jailed for five years for possessing a prohibited firearm - the minimum sentence he faced for the offence.
He was jailed for three years consecutive for manufacturing a prohibited firearm and one year concurrent for possessing prohibited ammunition.
He was given four months concurrent for possessing cannabis with intent to supply.
Judge Michael Carroll said the gun offences were "extremely serious", adding: "This was a determined effort on your part to possess two prohibited weapons. It is always concerning when there is the combination of firearms and drugs.
"Nothing other than a custodial sentence of some length can be justified."
The judge also ordered the weapons be destroyed.
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