A dozen guns without serial numbers, silencers and lots of ammunition. A Montrealer has been found guilty of hiding a veritable arsenal in his basement. Ziad Antoine Chamoun, who was already sentenced to five years in prison in 2014 for nearly identical facts, now faces a longer prison term.
Published at 12:00 am.
The 53-year-old was convicted on Monday of four charges including possession of a loaded prohibited firearm and possession of prohibited paraphernalia. He technically pleaded not guilty, preferring to admit that the prosecution had discharged its burden of proof.
In January 2020, the investigation began when the Service de police de la Ville de Montreal (SPVM) learned that Giat Antoine Chamoun was carrying a gun. During the operation by the Tactical Intervention Team, the Montrealer was arrested in the vehicle.
If he didn’t have any guns, Ziad Antoine Chamoun kept several models hidden in his basement cluttered with furniture and boxes. His residence on Rue Michel-Bibaud was located two blocks from the Collège Marie de France and the Saint-Joseph Oratory.
Police recovered two rifles and eight carbines with integrated magazines, including the brands Ruger, Parler-Hale and Simonov. Some of them were charged, others were equipped with a bayonet. Six home-made silencers and three high-capacity 30-round magazines were also seized.
Of all these weapons, five are considered prohibited firearms because of the length of the barrel, a summary of the facts presented to the court indicated. All but one gun had its numbers obliterated. Ziad Antoine Chamoun is subject to a firearms prohibition order.
Second episode of its kind
This is the second time the Montrealer has been arrested with a worrisome arsenal. He was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment in a similar case in 2014. At his home in Pierrefonds, police found a dozen guns, more than 500 bullets, chargers and Molotov cocktails. There were even Ontario Provincial Police shirts. His residence may have been used as a hideout by a criminal gang.
At the time, Ziad Antoine Chamon was a car salesman. According to the Registraire des entreprises, between 2016 and 2019 he managed a trucking and transportation company called Gama Canada. However, it was later removed.
Me Claude Berlinguette-Auger is representing the public prosecutor in the case, while Me Anna Ovanich defends the accused. Sentencing submissions are scheduled for November.
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