Jail time for gun robber
THE mastermind behind Australia's biggest gun heist has been jailed for nine years.
Kurt William Wesener, 29, broke in through the roof of Queensland Shooters Supplies in West Ipswich after destroying its security systems in a well-planned and professional robbery.
Wesener, who obsessed over armed robber Brenden Abbott and passionately studied a movie based on his life, cut the store's phone lines, disabled a heat-activated security system and destroyed an external alarm.
He and another man then dropped in through the roof, smashed an internal alarm and security cameras and stole the cameras' video footage.
Ipswich District Court heard they took 55 guns, including revolvers, semi-automatic pistols and rifles, when they committed the crime on September 22, 2007.
Some of the weapons have since been linked to a suicide, the shooting of a woman in the face and other crimes.
A female witness told the jury at Wesener's trial he showed her the guns on his bed and offered to give her one.
"The whole double bed was covered in guns, over 20 and different kinds," the witness said.
The court heard Wesener bragged to friends at a barbecue following the heist.
Only five of the guns were located in a storage shed rented by Wesener with the identification numbers scratched off.
Wesener was caught on CCTV cameras accessing the shed.
Scenes of Crime were unable to find fingerprints or DNA at the scene, but a shoe print matching the co-accused's sneakers was found on the roof.
Wesener had pleaded not guilty to entering a premises by a break and stealing but was found guilty by a jury in March, after about four and a half hours of deliberation.
Judge Sarah Bradley deemed Wesener the "principle offender - the mastermind" of the operation.
"This is an extremely serious example of the offence, (although it) did not itself produce or facilitate violence," she said.
With time already served in custody, Wesener will be eligible for parole on August 27, 2015.
Wesener's co-accused, Shane Mundy, 33, was found guilty for his part in the break-in in August last year and sentenced to eight years jail with parole eligibility on August 26, 2014.