Man found with loaded firearm out of jail

A SUNRAYSIA man found with a loaded gun under his mattress has been released from jail after a court yesterday dismissed one of the charges for which he was sentenced to six months' behind bars.

Angelo Gallo, 42, appealed the sentence in the Mildura County Court yesterday, two months after a magistrate jailed him for keeping the stolen .22 calibre rifle in his bedroom.

Gallo had pleaded guilty to being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm but, on appeal, the prosecution was unable to present evidence Gallo was prohibited from possessing a firearm at the time.

The court heard he had served a five-year period of prohibition, which was finished when his Cardross home was raided in late September.

Judge Irene Lawson reduced Gallo's sentence to the 69 days he had already served.

He will still have to complete the 12-month community corrections order he was placed on in the Magistrates' Court, which requires he complete 120 hours' unpaid community work.

Drug and alcohol treatment and a mental health assessment could account for half of those hours.

The court heard Gallo used cannabis daily to treat pain but only used methylamphetamine about two or three times a year.

Gallo's convictions for handling stolen goods, failing to safely store the firearm and cartridge, and possessing cannabis and methamphetamine were upheld.

Police found the rifle under his mattress during the raid on Gallo's self-contained unit at Cardross, which also found small amounts of methamphetamine and cannabis.

The court heard he used the rifle to hunt kangaroos to feed his animals.

A clinical psychologist's report did not identify any mental illnesses that caused the offending but said Gallo "exhibited signs of paranoid delusions" regarding how he was treated by the justice system.

Judge Irene Lawson said Gallo needed to address drug and mental health issues upon his release.

"It's going to be difficult for you for the next 12 months but given your history, it's in your interest to make the most of this 

opportunity," she said.

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