A Tauranga builder has been jailed for 25 months after being caught with a small cache of firearms at his Hairini home, including a high-powered AK47 rifle.

Ernest Charles Davy, 40, pleaded guilty to five charges of unlawful possession of a firearm when he appeared in the Tauranga District Court on Wednesday via audio-visual link.

The court heard the charges stemmed from a police search of Davy's home on September 27 last year.

During the search, police located a .22 calibre rifle and a small amount of ammunition hidden behind a Mongrel Mob sign on a wall.


Police also found a high-powered AK47 fitted with a scope, a .243 Remington rifle, and two .303 Lee Enfield rifles inside a Subaru vehicle parked at the address.

Davy waived his right to wait for a pre-sentence report.

Judge David Cameron told Davy his offending was "very serious", particularly given he had an extensive criminal history which spanned from 1994 to 2017 and included convictions for dishonesty and drug-related offences, plus three previous convictions for unlawful possession of firearms.

Judge Cameron told Davy he needed to hold him accountable, and also deter him and others from committing this type of offending with the sentence he had imposed.

The judge noted Davy was still subject to prison release conditions relating to his last jail sentence when he committed the latest set of offences.