The enthusiastic grandfather leads a double life as a gun runner – he imports $ 1 million in ammunition to Australia after losing a lot in a Ponzi program
- The grandfather was taken into custody after admitting to being an intergovernmental drug addict
- Trevor Manuel imported dozens of powerful firearms to sell to suspected criminals
- He and his associates bought nearly $ 1 million in weapons on the black market
- The first person in WA to be prosecuted for cross-border arms trafficking
A grandfather spent his first night behind bars after living a double life as an intergovernmental gunner who imported dozens of powerful firearms to sell to suspected criminals.
61-year-old Trevor Manuel was the first in Western Australia to be prosecuted for cross-border arms trafficking after pleading guilty in three cases to the Perth District Court on Tuesday.
The court heard that Manuel and his associates bought 87 weapons worth nearly $ 1 million on the black market after losing investor assets in a failed Ponzi investment program, The West Australian reported.
Trevor Manuel (pictured) imported dozens of powerful firearms to sell to suspected criminals
Among the investors who had lost millions were members of a Bikie gang that had persecuted the married father of four for years.
& # 39; The harassment was relentless … messages, phone calls, intimidation. He sold a house to pay these people, ”defender Stephen Butcher told the court.
"Basically, his life was all about keeping her at bay."
The court heard that Manuel was approached in 2016 by his brother Gregory and Wayne John Yanko, a Queensland employee, about their plans to make a lot of money selling weapons on the black market in Western Australia.
Trevor (pictured with his wife) is behind bars after pleading guilty to three cases of cross-border arms trafficking. He will be sentenced later this year
The couple convinced Manuel to use his gun license and company name to help them and to keep the bikes at bay by joining them on intergovernmental arms shopping expeditions in Queensland and NSW.
Powerful firearms such as the Glock and Sig Sauer models were the “firearms of choice” for criminals and were sold on the black market for up to $ 25,000, prosecutor Oralee Logan told the court.
Of the 87 guns, a street value of at least $ 900,000 was bought and was important Five of these weapons were recovered, all from suspected criminals.
Trevor Manuel is the first person in WA to be charged with cross-border arms trafficking
Judge Mark Herron admitted that Manuel was an "unwilling participant" who could benefit little from his participation, but said that the prison was inevitable.
Manuel has been taken into custody and will be sentenced later this year.
Yanko did not plead guilty to his involvement, while Greg Manuel, who is in Russia, was not charged.
Trevor Manuel was placed in pre-trial detention when he pleaded guilty to Perth District Court
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