VicPol organised crime: Guns damaged & ammo stolen

STICKY FINGERS: VicPol faces hard questions over damaged guns and missing ammo


SAM is an elderly shooter who lives near Ballarat on a rural property and has held pistol/longarm licences for over 30 years with an unblemished record. He is a popular and well-known member of his club and highly regarded there.

In 2021, Sam was the victim of an extortion attempt, being blackmailed to pay a large amount of money. He was told by the perpetrator that if he didn’t, they would make a complaint to the police and an intervention order would follow.

When he refused his blackmailer made good on their threat. Sam was visited by police from Ballan, served an interim intervention order, had his licence suspended and all his guns and ammunition seized.


On advice from others in his club, Sam came to the NSC for help and we referred him to the NSC’s barrister. The matter went to court, the allegations against him were proven to be false and the intervention order was thrown out.


When police seized his guns and ammunition, Sam asked the attending police to count the seized ammunition. However they refused, complaining “they didn’t have all day.”

The police property receipt simply states “various ammunition” but does NOT state the quantity or type of ammunition taken.So, Sam took pictures of all his seized ammunition as it was being loaded into the police car. Lots of pictures.


When Sam got his guns and ammunition back from police, over 60,000 rounds of ammunition was missing and some of his guns were returned damaged.

The “missing” ammunition was virtually all pistol ammo, being 9mm, .38 special, .45ACP, and .357 magnum and interesting, was all “factory load” ammo. Sam’s reloads were returned to him.

Also missing was Sam’s longarm ammo, particularly the high value stuff such as .17HMR. Like he had done previously, Sam took pictures of his returned ammo when police bought it back.

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Angry by what had happened Sam lodged a complaint against police with the Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission (IBAC). After hearing nothing from IBAC for months, Sam was told by IBAC that they had referred his complaint back to Victoria Police Professional Standards Command to investigate.

IBAC do this with 70% of the complaints they get about VicPol, claiming they don’t have the manpower or resources to investigate all complaints against police.


VicPol PSC sent the complaint to police at Bacchus Marsh to investigate. In other words, neighbouring police to those being investigated. Unsurprisingly, the police investigated themselves and found nothing wrong and Sam was told “case closed”, everything seized has been returned.

Frustrated Sam wrote directly to VicPol Chief Commissioner Shane Patton but hasn’t even received the courtesy of an acknowledgement let alone a reply!


On Thursday, 4th August 2022, Tim Quilty MP raised Sam’s matter in Parliament (see video here).

Sam’s case is NOT unique or new.

In 2019, The Age newspaper reported on theft from police custody. To read that story click here.

In 2018 the Victorian Auditor General prepared a report about the same issues.

To see the VAGO report click here.


It is apparent that neither VicPol nor the government are interested in fixing the problem of theft of guns, ammo and even drugs from police custody or police corruption. The NSC has also noticed that for whatever reason police misconduct seems to be targeted towards elderly licence holders.

Every Victorian shooter should be deeply concerned about what has happened to Sam. Before shrugging their shoulders and saying “it doesn’t affect me” we should remember Sam never thought in his worst nightmare that this could ever happen to him either.

Sam is deeply worried about his missing ammo as he knows his fingerprints and DNA are all over it and he dreads what might happen if his stolen ammo is used in a crime.

This is why we need a strong NSC. We fight for licence holders every day.

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Story update: The NSC can now advise that since Tim Quilty raised the matter in Parliament and the NSC went public with the story, Sam the member involved has had a phone call from a senior VicPol officer, who advised him that their “investigation” into the matter has been re-opened and was active again. Funny about that…
We can also reveal that Sam went to the SSAA for assistance (as he is also their member) and got no help…(what a surprise, NOT!)
More updates as they happen.


Ha ha ha, no bloody surprises there!

The Age just did an article on this

Doesn’t read like there’s any updates though - pretty much a rehash of the original NSC piece.

Sam’s complaint has been substantiated…the seized ammo was not properly recorded by police.

The punishment for police involved, counselling.

What a joke!

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There was actually one bit I wanted to ask @NationalShootingCouncil

National Shooting Council vice president Peter Zabrdac said in Australia, there was currently no limit on the amount of ammunition a person could purchase. In other states though, all purchases were recorded against a person’s firearms licence to ensure the amounts they owned were known.
Zabrdac said a similar scheme should be considered here to protect licence holders and the public.

Are you proposing an ammo register in Victoria?

I think wordsmithing could have been a lot better, but I’m fairly sure that conversation is pointing to poor custodianship of evidence.

What does custodianship of evidence have to “all purchases were recorded against a person’s … licence” and “similar scheme should be considered here to protect”

I don’t know how I missed this the first time I read the article.

I guess if it was on the books somewhere, it would be a lot easier to track what did and did not exist. It did jump out at me too however. By the way, recorded in a shop is not the same as a register in this context. That’s really the only thing I can think of.

Our VP already posted on this publicly on the NSC’s FB page and elsewhere.

Both he and the NSC stand by his direct quotes in the story that begin with " and end with " anything else was the journalists words, not his or ours.

The claim that the NSC is pushing for or supports an ammo register in Victoria is NOT true and is being spread by Jeff Bourman/SFFP after taking political tactic advice from Barry Howlett.

This is what our VP said publicly.

So without asking or checking with myself Bourman has expressed his “outrage” at what the Age published today and he is claiming I and the NSC were calling for an ammunition register.

Wrong Jeff. I stated to the Age reporter that in other states ammunition sales are recorded against licences upon purchase.(e.g NSW, WA etc) which is true.

And what I actually said was that blackmarket guns were useless without ammo so there needed to be discussion on ways to stop trafficking of ammo in the blackmarket.

But hey Jeff, your the expert. Before you shoot your mouth off at least get your facts right!

My direct words appear with " and end with ", which means a direct quote. Obviously Jeff was asleep at the Academy at Glen Waverley when the report/Affidavit writing classes were on?

No comment from Jeff that enough ammo to supply a regiment has gone “missing” from police custody?

Police corruption occurs because other cops stay quiet or look the other way.

Didn’t see or hear a peep from Jeff about VicPols missing guns either?

And as VicPol have conceded that the quantity of seized ammo was NOT properly recorded how can they then claim it was ALL returned?

Explain that one Jeff?

And Jeff really needs to stop listening to advice on political tactics from Barry Howlett.

It was probably Barry who advised him to vote yes on the Omnibus Bill as well.

December 13 fast approaches and I cant wait as a lot more will be revealed about Bourman and the election campaign and Jeff won’t be happy…

I’d be more concerned with the nearly 50 per cent drop in my primary vote if I was you Jeff?

Stay tuned…

Hope that answers your question Tempestman?


You appear to be directly quoting via the use of " and ". Who said this?

I didn’t see that statement before - I don’t really use Facebook.
For the most part, yes it does.

I used quotation marks because I was directly quoting the article, and using another’s writing.

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