Driver’s van loaded with weapons

A man with a van load of weapons has been jailed for five years after a National Crime Agency investigation.

Jaromir Hrbek, 59, was stopped last month driving through the Port of Dover in his Peugeot Expert van.

Security officials discovered a magazine of ammunition in the driver’s door compartment and notified Border Force.

Hrbek, who said he had been to visit his daughter in Edinburgh, denied there was anything else in his van and said he had a gun at home in the Czech Republic and held a licence for it.

Officers searched the van and discovered a loaded 9mm Walther PPK in the back of the passenger seat.

Hrbek said he was getting divorced and his lifestyle was “a bit chaotic” and he had forgotten he had put the gun there.

He was arrested and cautioned and made no further comment.

Officers continued their search and found ammunition including 50 9mm Luger cartridges, a bow with arrows, five knives including one 12 inches long, a machete, 50 .22 cartridges, a knuckle duster and a loaded Walther PPQ pistol wrapped in a paper bag and hidden in the vehicle’s frame work.

Hrbek remained silent in interview.

At Canterbury Crown Court he was jailed for five years after admitting possession of a firearm and offensive weapons.

Richard Bowen, NCA senior investigating officer said: “Hrbek’s Peugeot van was a veritable arsenal.

“This National Crime Agency investigation has taken all those weapons out of circulation and I applaud the Border Force officers who stopped the vehicle and questioned Hrbek.

“The NCA works with domestic and international partners to combat the significant threat to the UK public from firearms related crime.”

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