Uzi for sale in Chiswick Car Park

Sky News reporter's sting catches gun dealer

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Following a successful covert operation by a Sky News reporter, Michael Patrick, a 42 year old father of four, has pleaded guilty to selling an Uzi 9mm machine gun in a Chiswick car park.

As part of a Sky News investigation into how simple it is to buy illegal weapons, Patrick was contacted by the undercover journalist after placing an advert on the internet.  He was subsequently filmed by a hidden camera handing over the illegal weapon to the reporter in the back of a van.  

The news organisation had contacted the former IT specialist, from Leicestershire, as part of an investigation after seeing his online advertisement for an air pistol, Leicester Crown Court heard.

When it was told the pistol had been sold, Patrick offered the 600-rounds-per-minute Uzi, a firearm popular in the Middle East but banned in the UK.  The defendant and reporter organised a secret meeting in the car park in Chiswick. Patrick handed himself in to police when Sky News broadcast the £2,000 transaction 12 days later.

Before adjourning the case until December 16 and remanding Patrick in custody, Judge Michael Stokes QC told him: “This is a weapon which could kill a dozen people in no time at all. A custodial sentence is inevitable in this case and it’s going to be a custodial sentence measured in years rather than months.”

This news comes at the very time that such miltary style weapons have made available to the American public due the lapse of a 10-year prohibition put in place by former leader Bill Clinton which covered AK-47s and Uzi sub machine guns. 

December 10, 2004