Man caught in lengthy police surveillance operation sentenced

SENTENCED: A man who was arrested on guns charges after police raided his Pinnacle Road home in February 2014 has been sentenced in Orange District Court. FILE PHOTO A 67-year-oldwho was one of two men arrested in 2014 on weapons and drugs charges following a year-long covert police operation was given a suspended jail sentence in Orange District Court on Friday.

Richard Thomas Fulmer of Pinnacle Road was arrested along withMario Antonio LaSpina on February 5, 2014, following a police investigation involving undercover officers and telephone intercepts.

A key factor in Fulmer avoiding jail time wasbecause he is the sole carer of his sick and frail wife and Judge James Bennett also took into account his guilty pleas, age andlack of criminal record.

LaSpina was previously sentenced to three years and eight months jail with a balance of two years and four months.

According to agreed facts tendered to the court, LaSpina supplied undercover police with 14 kilograms of cannabis and eight guns between January 2013 and February 2014.

During their transactions police recorded the serial numbers of all banknotes given to LaSpina and $32,100 of those notes were found at Fulmer’s house when it was searched on February 5, 2014, and have been seized as proceeds of crime.

However, Fulmer was released on bail after two days incarceration following his arrest andon Friday, Judge James Bennett sentenced him to a two-year suspended jail sentence for four charges, which he pleaded guilty to on November 7, 2016. His other charges were withdrawn and dismissed.

Fulmer was given a 20-month suspended jail sentence for recklessly dealing with the proceeds of crime and one year for each of the three charges of selling a firearm to a person who was unauthorised to possess it. The sentenceswill run concurrently for a total of two years.

LaSpina came to police attention for cannabis and gun supply in January 2013 and police found evidence Fulmer had sold him a Brno .22 rifle, a .22 calibre Anschutz rifle and a Boito brand 410 shotgun on September 19, 2013.

Fulmers firearms licence was suspended after he was placed on a good behaviour bond without conviction on December 27, 2012, after being found in possession of a stolen caravan.

Because the bond was still in effect at the time of the offence, Judge Bennett replaced it with a good behaviour bond with a conviction but no further penalty.

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