13 years for possession of unlicensed firearms


A 31-year-old man was sentenced to 13 years in prison for possession of two unlicensed firearms and ammunition.

Handing down the sentence in the Johannesburg Magistrates’ Court, Magistrate Thandi Twele told the accused, Sibonelo Mchunu, that an unlicensed firearm is a serious offence.

“Our society deserves to live in a better world. We are seeing an increase in violent crimes like hijacking and murder where unlicensed firearms are used,” Twele said. She pointed out that she hopes that the sentence imposed on Mchunu will send a strong message and discourage others to commit the same crime.

Mchunu was arrested last year at Noord Taxi rank in the CBD during a routine patrol by the police. He was arrested after getting off a taxi from Alexandra. During the search, police found two unlicensed firearms loaded with ammunition in his possession.

Handing down the sentence, Twele told the accused that the guns he had in his possession were fully loaded, showing that there was an intention to use them.

“Till today, you maintain that you are innocent but you have not given an explanation as to why you were in possession of two unlicensed firearms.”

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Belinda Pheto

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