Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Gun store closes doors for good after complaints

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A Winnipeg gun store has been permanently shut following a police raid that was triggered by complaints about what was going on behind closed doors.

Moreguns Supply was sentenced in provincial court this week for having four prohibited Zoraki handguns inside their strip-mall location at 1420 Clarence Ave. More than two dozen other charges against the company were stayed, and all 30 charges against the owner, Sean Beiko, were also dropped.

Crown attorney Sean Sass said investigators who executed search warrants at the business in 2011 quickly realized something was wrong.

"To put it succinctly, the place was a mess. There were firearms just lying out on desks and workbenches," he said. "It looks as though his main offence is running a business poorly."

Police found no evidence weapons were being sold illegally or used in any crimes.

But they clearly had inventory they weren't supposed to, ultimately leading to the seizure of some 400 guns.

"We're viewing this largely as a regulatory offence rather than a criminal one," said Sass in explaining why the majority of the prosecution essentially fell apart.

Although nearly all of those weapons could now be returned, Beiko has chosen to close his doors and sell the weapons at auction, court was told. He will use the proceeds to pay off the $15,000 fine his company received this week for their violations.

The Moreguns Supply business was registered under a numbered company that dates back to 2001 and has two listed directors, including Beiko. The second man was never charged.

Court heard they began by specializing in the sale of paintball supplies but eventually branched out to firearms. The vast majority of their meagre sales occurred at various trade shows Beiko would travel to.

The company specialized in the sale of non-restricted rifles, restricted rifles, handguns and non-restricted shotguns.

www.mikeoncrime.com

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 14, 2013 A5

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