Weapons capable of discharging a noxious gas were found at a Haverfordwest man’s home.

Stephen Peter Byrne, of Wordsworth Avenue, Priory Park, pleaded guilty to acquiring 11 weapons to discharge tear gas and pyrotechnics during 2017, when he appeared before Haverfordwest magistrates on Tuesday, November 26.

Byrne, 65, also admitted possession of the items in Haverfordwest between 2017 and May 2019.

Vaughan Pritchard-Jones, prosecuting, said Byrne, who had a firearms certificate for legitimate weapons, produced a box containing various hand-guns while police were at his home.

“He said as far as he was concerned they were not part of the firearms regulations.

“He had bought them online and was assured they were not illegal and could not be converted.”

The weapons were seized and an expert found they could easily be converted to fire and discharge a noxious substance.

Mr Pritchard-Jones said one of the pistols had an obstruction in the barrel which could simply be removed with the correct tool.

Byrne, who was previously of clean character, told police he had no intention of converting the guns and was unaware that they were illegal in their current form.

Mr Pritchard-Jones added: “There is no suggestion that he has taken any steps to convert them from the condition that they were in when he bought them.”

Katy Hanson, defending, said Byrne had taken up collecting replica revolvers as a hobby when he retired due to health issues, and had joined a gun club.

“He found it was significantly cheaper to buy them from outside the UK. He thought it was legitimate.

“When asked by police he immediately handed them all over.”

She added: “This offence was committed through naivety, rather than any intention to do any malicious act. This is a genuine error on his part.

“He is genuinely remorseful for his actions.”

Magistrates declined jurisdiction and Byrne was released on unconditional bail to appear at Swansea crown court on December 13.