Routine traffic stop leads to gun-making lab in North Vancouver

Traffic stop leads to gun lab

A North Vancouver man is facing a host of gun charges after a routine traffic stop led to a cache of contraband.

On July 17, a West Vancouver police officer pulled over a driver and quickly learned the man was wanted on two different arrest warrants.

In his vehicle, officers found a loaded handgun and other weapons along with methamphetamine, cocaine and fentanyl, all pre-packaged for sale. They also found a fake police badge and gun belt. Some of the items were stashed in secret compartments, police say.

At the man's home, officers discovered more suspected drugs and paraphernalia, fraudulent IDs, more weapons and the components and tools required to make new guns, including 3D printers capable of producing gun parts, said Const. Kevin Goodmurphy.

“We’re confident that we were able to dismantle a gun-making lab,” he said. “What seems to be an up-and-coming and concerning trend for us in law enforcement is the ability to obtain the schematics … online, on how to print firearm parts.”

Investigators called in the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit and Real Time Intelligence Centre, to assist in the investigation.

Seven charges have been sworn against Thomas Barewski, 31, including three counts of possession of a prohibited device or ammunition knowing it is unauthorized; one count of possession of a firearm or ammunition contrary to prohibition order; unauthorized possession of a firearm; one count of possession of a loaded prohibited or restricted firearm, and one count of possession of an identity document.

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