A Perth couple charged with dozens of firearm offences after police allegedly uncovered a massive haul of powerful weapons have faced court.
Joshua David Burnside, 28, appeared at Joondalup Magistrates Court via videolink on 26 charges after organised crime squad detectives last month raided a warehouse where he worked.
Police alleged they seized 10 guns at the Wangara warehouse on July 14, including a disassembled AK-47, a SKS semi-automatic rifle, handguns and pistols.
Burnside’s fiancee Natasha Kate Millias, 27, was charged with firearm and drugs offences after police executed a second search warrant at the couple’s Madeley home that day.
Police allegedly found a double-barrel shotgun, $35,115 cash, pepper spray, 2g of methylamphetamine and drug paraphernalia at the home.
Burnside, a self-employed panel beater, remains behind bars after an application for bail on Wednesday was refused by Magistrate Sandra De Maio, the West Australian reported.
‘The list of what is found is terrifying quite frankly,’ she said.
‘It’s a small armoury that is found.’
The police prosecutor described the stash of the firearms allegedly seized as ‘ready to go to war.’
Some of the weapons were allegedly found hidden in vehicles at the Wangara warehouse while a shotgun allegedly found at the Madeley home was buried in the backyard, the court was told.
Burnside’s lawyer Anthony Eyres said his client would be pleading not guilty.
Mr Eyres told the court his client’s fingerprints weren’t found on any of the seized weapons but added DNA test results on were pending.
‘There is no evidence Mr Burnside has touched these weapons,’ he said
He told the court the money allegedly seized by police was from the recent sale of a car.
Burnside was remanded in custody until October 14.
His fiancee faced court on Monday, charged with possessing a firearm/ammunition, possessing a controlled weapon and two counts each of possessing stolen or unlawfully obtained property and possessing any drug paraphernalia in or on which there was a prohibited drug or plant.
She will reappear in court on August 31.
The accused couple portray a glamorous lifestyle on their social media accounts, regularly posting selfies of themselves at fancy restaurants.
An Organised Crime Squad spokesperson said illicit firearms such as those allegedly seized pose a significant threat to Western Australia.
‘Whether they are used for the purposes of intimidation or threats, to aid the committing of violent crimes, or exchanged for other illicit commodities such as drugs, their presence in situations that could escalate to violence is a concern,’ the spokesperson said in a statement.
‘The identification of people involved in the supply and distribution of illicit firearm remains a priority for law enforcement agencies across the country, and WA Police Force will continue to actively pursue any person involved the illicit firearms trade – regardless of whether they are a buyer, a seller or a facilitator.’