Police employee hid weapons in mannequins

Photo / file
Photo / file

A Wellington police employee is on trial at Wellington District Court after allegedly hiding fully and semi-automatic weapons inside plastic mannequins.

The guns were found inside the torso and legs of hollow, uniformed mannequins in a locked room at the 44-year-old man's Johnsonville home, Fairfax Media reported today.

A third mannequin had gun parts hidden in it.

It was reported to police after an anonymous tipoff to Crimestoppers.

Patrick Phipps, a technology support engineer at the Royal New Zealand Police College in Porirua, has pleaded not guilty to two charges of illegal possession of a Finnish Velmet semi-automatic and a Czechoslovakian VZ58 automatic rifle.

The court was told that Phipps, a gun collector, had the necessary endorsements on his firearms licence to legally possess the weapons but neither one showed up on the police database.

Phipps said he had never seen the guns before and had no idea they were there.

The trial continues today.

- NZPA

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