Businessman jailed over hidden weapon

The gun found in McMahon's home.
The gun found in McMahon's home.
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A Rainhill man arrested after bullets and a pistol were found hidden inside his shoe at Liverpool Airport has been jailed for five years.

Michael McMahon, 63, of School Lane, last week admitted six counts of firearms offences when he appears at Liverpool Crown Court.

The court had earlier heard how McMahon was stopped by security at Liverpool John Lennon Airport in August flying out to Dublin.

An x-ray of his hand luggage was flagged to police by security staff.

Police officers removed the bag from the x-ray machine and searched it in the presence of McMahon.

McMahon, who is a successful businessman, was found to be carrying 13 live rounds of ammunition and two spent cartridge cases hidden in a shoe.

A search of his house later uncovered a self-loading gun in a wooden beam above his bed, another pistol in the kitchen, as well as more ammunition.

During police interview, McMahon claimed he bought the gun following a spate of violent robberies in his affluent neighbourhood.

Detective Chief Inspector Will Chatterton, of the North West Counter Terrorism Unit, said: “⿿This case demonstrates how rigorous airport security can have an impact on keeping our streets safe.

“⿿He has never satisfactorily explained why he had these weapons and ammo in his possession and what they were intended for.

“McMahon begins a significant jail term in the knowledge that the UK police and security service will do everything to prevent illegal guns and ammo crossing our borders.⿝”