James Bond fired gun nut's imagination, court told

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 29 December, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 29 December, 1999, 12:00am

A 'gun nut' hoarded a stylish weaponry collection because he had seen the same weapons brandished by film spy James Bond, a court heard yesterday.

Defence counsel Clive Grossman SC said engineer Lee Wing-toa, 35, was fascinated by two handguns he had seen in 007 films.

Replicas of the guns were part of an illegal collection police discovered when they raided his home in April.

Lee yesterday pleaded guilty before District Court judge Alan Wright to importing strategic commodities and possessing arms and ammunition without a licence.

Lee's collection was discovered when various gun parts he ordered from Germany were sent to him through the International Mailing Centre, prosecutor Frederic Whitehouse said.

After a postman made a report, police went to Lee's home in Broadcast Drive, Kowloon Tong, and discovered more weapons parts, including gun barrels, and five replica pistols.

Lee told police each gun had been bought from toy shops in Hong Kong but some genuine gun parts had been bought via the Internet.

The guns could not be fired and Lee did not intend to use them for any unlawful purposes, the court heard.

Lee also told police he intended to decorate his home with the gun parts.

Mr Grossman told the court Lee had begun playing with guns at an early age because his late father - who was a gun club member - often took him to the club.

He also served with the Singapore army in the early '90s because it was 'a good opportunity for a real gun nut', said Mr Grossman.

Despite his indulgence, Lee fully respected firearm safety and he was satisfied simply by looking at his collection of guns, the court heard.

Judge Wright adjourned sentencing until January 13.

The defendant was released on bail.