The NSW Police Minister David Elliot has today flagged that he will not stand down, despite the fact he is now under criminal investigation for what he describes as an “administrative breach”.
Yesterday, GunHub reported that Mr Elliot has fired a fully automatic submachine gun without the appropriate license, which is illegal in NSW even when supervised by an appropriately licensed person at a range.
Mr Elliot endured significant questioning at the budget estimates committing hearing this morning over his decision to fire the SMG in 2018, when he was the corrective services minister.
The Police Minister has incidated that he believes that he is “a victim of a mistake of fact” and that he was acting in “good faith under the instruction of the range master” at the time. “If I have been found to have done something wrong, illegal or malicious. Then I’ve got to answer for that” he continued.
“I’m concerned there could be up to 200 people – very prominent people over the course of two commissioners – who, like me, may have been victims of a mistake of fact and undertaken an activity they shouldn’t have undertaken.”
The Premier of NSW, Glady Berejiklian had said in a statement that Mr Elliot retained her “full support. ” “I understand that Corrections NSW has apologised to the Minister for their oversight “
An investigation is currently underway by NSW Police to determine whether the minister was in breach of the Firearms Act at the time of the event. If found to be in breach, he could be charged with Unauthorised Possession or Use of a Prohibited firearm, which carries a Maximum of 14 years’ in prison.
Deputy Labor leader Catley said the Premier must take “leadership” and fire Mr Elliott for “breaking the law”.
This is the second time Mr Elliot has been investigated by NSW Police, when late last year he was cleared of impersonating a police officer during a road range incident, where he allegedly told a teenage boy after an accident that he “worked for the cops”. The boy’s father told The Australian that Mr Elliott “chased” his son “through the backstreets of Castle Hill” at the time.