Court: Man Loses Appeal For Firearm Importation

December 6, 2021

James Rumley — who was sentenced to 14 years in prison after being convicted of importing firearm parts — has lost his appeal.

The Court of Appeal’s ruling said, “The appellant in this case, James Rumley, was unanimously convicted by a jury on three charges of unlawful importation of a firearm, contrary to section 3(1)(b) of the Firearms Act 1973 on 25 November 2020 after a trial before Wolffe APJ.

“Each of the charges involved the importation of component parts of a firearm, which by the definition of a firearm contained in section 1(1) of the Act includes any component part thereof. On 14 December 2020 he was sentenced to 14 years’ imprisonment in respect of each charge, such sentences to run concurrently.”

In describing the decision, “Particularly given that the sentencing suggested by the appellant’s counsel was one of 11 to 12 years, a sentence of 14 years cannot properly be described as manifestly excessive. But neither do I think that the sentence was in fact excessive. The offences were extremely serious.

“There is no legitimate purpose for which the component parts could have been imported into Bermuda, and in my view the judge was fully entitled to find that the component firearms parts, when constructed into fully functioning firearms, must have been intended for a criminal purpose.

“The judge carefully considered matters, and gave full and relevant reasons. I would therefore refuse the appellant’s renewed application for leave to appeal against the sentences of 14 years’ imprisonment imposed by the judge.”

The full judgment follows below [PDF here]:

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