A BUILDING site security guard found in possession of a stun gun, bought it thinking it was a torch, a court heard.

Zafer Khan Sultani is facing a potential minimum five-year sentence having been charged with possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.

It relates to the taser-type stun gun in his possession at the site in Peterlee, on May 20, last year.

Jamie Adams, representing the defendant at Durham Crown Court, asked that the charge was not put to his client.

Querying if the Crown might review the allegation, Mr Adams said: “He tells me he bought it at some sort of car boot sale not very long beforehand, thinking it was simply a torch, which was less cumbersome than the rather large torch he’s supplied with by his employer.

“The one thing lacking in this case is the absence of aggression or violence.”

Asked by Judge Christopher Prince if the Crown would be considering amending the charge, prosecuting counsel Martin Towers said: “I would not wish to offer in open court the advice I’ll be tendering. But, I will be offering advice.”

The case was adjourned and the 31-year-old defendant, of Clifton Road, Newcastle, was bailed to return on March 14.