A sawn-off shotgun, which was discovered by Kent Police officers during a search of a man’s home in Medway has led to a long jail sentence.

Detectives arranged for a warrant to be executed at the property in Rochester, as they had reason to believe Robert Reading had access to firearms. The search was carried out on Friday 2 September 2022 and as well as a number of legally-held air weapons, officers located a sawn-off shotgun with ammunition hidden in the loft space.

The weapon located in the loft space of Robert Reading’s home.

Reading, 50, was immediately arrested and later charged with possession of a prohibited weapon.

He pleaded guilty to that offence and another investigated by the Metropolitan Police Service, and was sentenced to a total of six-and-a-half years’ imprisonment when he appeared at Inner London Crown Court on Wednesday 24 April 2024.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Mark Simcox of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said:

‘Robert Reading admitted to having a fascination with firearms but that is no excuse for him having a sawn-off shotgun hidden in his home.

‘The weapon was confirmed to be a working firearm that clearly had the potential to cause serious injury or death in the wrong hands, so it was imperative that it be removed from Reading’s possession and destroyed.

‘Kent Police will always investigate when they receive information that someone may be in possession of a firearm to ensure potential victims and the wider general public are protected from harm.’

By Ed

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