Nova Scotia

Bedford man facing 45 charges after pawn shop raid

A Bedford man facing more than 45 charges after a search of a pawn shop in Lower Sackville told CBC News three years ago he has no choice but to peddle stolen merchandise.

RCMP also seized a loaded .38 calibre revolver, three shotguns, two rifles and assorted ammunition

A Bedford man facing more than 45 charges after a search of a pawn shop in Lower Sackville told CBC News three years ago he has no choice but to peddle stolen merchandise.

On Sept. 19, RCMP searched Cash Traders Pawn Shop.

As part of their investigation into recent break and enters in Lower Sackville, the RCMP Street Crime Enforcement Unit (SCEU) executed a search warrant at the pawn shop.

Police say they seized a quantity of stolen jewelry, as well as electronics and other related items.

RCMP also seized a loaded .38 calibre revolver, three shotguns, two rifles, assorted ammunition, a stun gun and two canisters of bear spray.

A man was arrested at the scene and taken in custody.

Ghasson Najib Jason EL Chater, 52, of Bedford was scheduled to appear in Dartmouth Provincial Court Wednesday for an arraignment on the following charges:

  • Firearm trafficking (five counts)
  • Possession of firearm for the purpose of trafficking (three counts)
  • Possession of prohibited firearm with ammunition
  • Possession of firearm obtained by crime (six counts)
  • Possession of weapon obtained by crime
  • Careless storage of a firearm (six counts)
  • Contravention of storage regulations (six counts)
  • Possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose (nine counts)
  • Possession of firearm knowing it is unauthorized (six counts)
  • Possession of prohibited weapon knowing it is unauthorized
  • Possession of property obtained by crime (two counts)
  • Possession of property obtained by crime for the purpose of trafficking (two counts)
  • Obstruction of a peace officer

Back in May of 2011, Chater told CBC News selling stolen merchandise is just the way he does business.

"I mean sometimes we know it's stolen and that the person stole the item but we have no choice," he said. "You have to take it or you're going to have some kinda damage in your store and maybe they break the window or something like that. Sometimes you have no choice."

Chater is back in court in January.

Security cameras considered

In the meantime, the city and police will look at ways to intercept stolen merchandise before it ends up in pawn shops according to Barry Dalrymple, District 1 councillor .

"Maybe we should look at making it mandatory to have security cameras inside the doors, so that every person walking in there with items is identified," he said. "And on the tape is a clock showing you the date and time when they came in."

Former councillor Jackie Barkhouse proposed that same idea to Halifax council three years ago – that the city and the police force should consider stricter legislation.

Her motion was moved and passed at a council meeting in May of 2011.

It said: "This would include but not be limited to the monitoring and reporting to police all items being brought into these businesses on a daily basis."

Nothing ever came from the councillors motion. Neither the city nor the police ever gave it any consideration.

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