Vic Dealer wins 6 year legal fight against Registry.

Dealer wins fight against Victorian registry

9 July 2020|Gun shops, Victoria Police

THE GEELONG ADVERTISER has run this story on a local gun dealership which has just won a marathon fight with the Victorian firearms registry.

T he story reveals the extreme and unnecessary length that the registry went to by seizing 1,750 guns from a dealer who had done nothing wrong. All it has a achieved, is to damage our industry.

We’re glad Mr Haugh seems to have gotten through this. In the meantime, the registry is so inaccurate, it does not know where one in four firearms are.

From the Geelong Advertiser:

Geelong man Rod Haugh, of The Outdoor Sportsman, wins six-year fight to get licence and guns back

A Geelong gun dealer has won a six-year battle with Victoria Police to clear his name in a bittersweet victory that casts a cloud over the state of the Victorian firearms registry.

A Geelong gun dealer has won a six-year battle with Victoria Police to clear his name in a bittersweet victory that casts a cloud over the state of the Victorian firearms registry.

Rod Haugh says the protracted legal fight to restore his gun dealer licence has cost about $9 million in revenue at The Outdoor Sportsman in Geelong West with the stress of the ordeal suspected of leading to the 72-year-old’s deteriorating health.

The Licensing and Regulation Division of Victoria Police has returned about 1750 guns seized from the store in 2013 and restored his dealer’s licence after an agreement was reached at the Firearms Appeal Committee earlier this year.

“It’s been hard I tell you, it’s been very hard,” Mr Haugh said.

“But I have always been confident I will see it out.”

Mr Haugh has only ever been accused of poor bookkeeping and has not been accused or charged with any other wrongdoing.

While he accepts he contributed to part of the bookkeeping problem, he insists the major issues were in the accuracy and management of the state’s firearms registry.

Firearms must be registered with Victoria Police, with dealers like the The Outdoor Sportsman submitting a weekly record of purchases and sales.

Mr Haugh, who had previously operated his business for more than 30 years in Geelong without an issue, said his recent experience exposed serious questions over the accuracy of the state’s firearms registry

“The registry figures, I would estimate to be 25 per cent out in our case,” he said.

“If they don’t know where one in four guns are, then what’s the use of registration?”

A Victoria Police spokesman said the 1996 Firearms Reforms identified a uniform requirement for all firearms sales to be conducted only by, or through, licenced firearm dealers and certain minimum principles that would underpin rules relating to the recording of firearms transactions by dealers and right of inspection by police.

“Therefore, licensed firearm dealers are expected to input data records of firearm acquisitions and disposals,” the spokesman said.

“In the case of Mr Haugh, his dealer’s licence was suspended in 2013 as a result of the inaccuracy of his record keeping which was a breach of his licence conditions.

“The matter at the Firearms Appeal Committee was settled without the latter having to make a ruling. It was adjourned sine die for both parties to try and reach an amicable agreement, which occurred in January.”

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Glad he had a win but the big question is, does he get to file for compensation now? Or are weapons licencing like traffic branch and immune from being sued for costs and compensation when they make mistakes and are ruled against in court?
There needs to be a huge example made at a massive expense to weapons branch so the pricks think twice before trying to unjustly shaft someone again.

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So basically Vic Police can do whatever they like to gun dealers and if it is shown they were wrong, can just walk away without consequences for their actions.

That’s fucked.

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It is possible to sue for “Malicious Prosecution” in certain cases , but its costly and difficult. The NSC hopes that happens in this case.

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That’s true but like you say is very costly, and to prove it’s gone beyond mere incompetence and to the point of being malicious can be a curly one.
You should be able sue for their incompetence and or negligence, as the actions of one idiot and the swipe of his pen can cost someone their livelihood. And all the police do is shrug their shoulders and go on with their lives.

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