Visitor fined $17k on gun and ammo charges

The US visitor caught with a gun and ammunition in his suitcase when he arrived in Antigua on a flight from Miami last week, was fined a total of $17,000 after he pleaded guilty in the All Saints Magistrate Court yesterday.

James Peloguin was fined $10,000 payable forthwith for the gun and another $7,000 for the seven rounds of ammunition he had in it. That fine also had to be paid right away, as ordered by Magistrate Ngaio Emanuel.

Peloguin paid the money to escape the one-year jail time for the gun, and the seven months, consecutive jail time for the ammunition.

Police said the man was found with a .380 pistol and seven matching rounds of ammunition on Saturday afternoon.

At the time he was caught, Peloguin was waiting for a flight out of Antigua to Montserrat.

The 54 year old is licensed to hold a firearm in the US, but his licence does not extend to Antigua.

He told the court he had intended to leave the weapon at a relative’s place, but there was objection since children live at the house. He said he put it in his suitcase and eventually forgot it there.

Police said that so far for this year they have removed nine illegal weapons and over three hundreds rounds of ammunition from the streets.