North Creake man admits illegally possessing 12 firearms after prison release

The crest above the entrance to King's Lynn Court in College Lane. ENGANL00120120910143711
The crest above the entrance to King's Lynn Court in College Lane. ENGANL00120120910143711

A man has admitted illegally possessing firearms at his home following a prison sentence.

A court today heard that the arsenal of weapons at David Bickell’s home in North Creake was only discovered after an alleged assault on him was reported to the authorities.

Bickell, 47, of Burnham Road, North Creake, pleaded guilty to 12 charges of possessing an air weapon when prohibited from doing so when he appeared before Lynn magistrates on Monday.

He also admitted a further count of possessing one of the weapons without a valid firearms certificate.

Alison Cotterill, prosecuting, told the court that Bickell was barred from possessing guns after he was sentenced to four months in prison in October 2014.

She said: “By virtue of that period of imprisonment, Mr Bickell was not allowed to have firearms in his possession for five years following his release from prison.”

However, police were alerted on December 23 last year when a paramedic saw a disassembled rifle on a table in Bickell’s home while he was assisting him following a reported assault.

Police, who were informed of the alleged attack, went to the property later that day and found a total of 12 air weapons in several rooms around the premises.

Most of the weapons were air rifles, although one was an air pistol which required a certificate in order for it to be held legally.

Miss Cotterill said that, when interviewed, Bickell had refused to confirm or deny who the weapons belonged to, although his son, who also lived at the address, suggested at least some of them were his.

The case had been listed for a trial before Bickell changed his plea to guilty.

George Sorrell, mitigating, told the bench: “The defendant accepts that he was in possession of those items.”

However, magistrates declined to sentence Bickell, saying their powers were insufficient to deal with the case.

The matter was instead committed to Norwich Crown Court for sentencing on a date yet to be fixed. Bickell was released on conditional bail until his next court appearance.

A warrant had earlier been issued for his arrest after he failed to attend on time for the scheduled start of the hearing, but was subsequently withdrawn.