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Sawed-off firearms results in prison term

A Prince George man was sentenced Friday to a further four years in prison in relation to a 2011 firearms seizure.

A Prince George man was sentenced Friday to a further four years in prison in relation to a 2011 firearms seizure.

For Colby Selly John Johnson, 29, the term comes on top of the 200 days he has already spent in custody following his May 2011 arrest when police seized a sawed-off 12-gauge shotgun and a sawed-off .22 calibre bolt action rifle from the basement of a 200 block Quince St. home.

The rifle's stock had also been sawed off and hockey tape wrapped around the pistol grip, effectively turning it into a handgun, the court was told.

Police also found a rifle that had been reported stolen some time before lying on Johnson's upstairs bed next to a copy of a conditional sentence order he had been serving at the time, the court also heard.

Crown prosecutor Geoffrey McDonald contended the intention was to either sell the guns or move them on to organized crime but defence lawyer Jason LeBlond said that assertion was not admitted by his client.

Johnson was arrested without incident and McDonald noted that by pleading guilty, Johnson saved taxpayers the expense of a three-week trial.

In issuing the sentence, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Ron Tindale agreed with a joint submission that sees Johnson sentenced to five-and-a-half years for possession of a prohibited firearm with ammunition and concurrent terms of two years for possession of a stolen weapon and one year for improper firearm storage.

Although Johnson has an extensive criminal record, Tindale found he is still quite young and there is hope for rehabilitation. LeBlond said there are good employment prospects for Johnson once he's out of prison.

LeBlond also said Johnson, who has a Grade 8 education, suffers from dyslexia and it is believed the medication he was taking for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder while growing up was a factor in his struggles at school.

Two other people were also arrested at the time of the seizures and have since been sentenced.

In April, Reginald James Davis, 43, received six years in prison.

Just prior to sentencing, Davis had tried to take the fall, claiming he was responsible for all the guns, but failed to convince the sentencing judge who accepted Davis's earlier statement to police that he knew the firearms were stolen and that Johnson asked him to hide the weapons.

And last month Johnson's father, Wade Selly Gray Johnson, 56, was fined $500 and issued a five-year firearms prohibition for improper storage of a firearm.

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