Two women in southern Ontario have accused a gun instructor of using them to sell his own gun to his students, and he was one of the shooters in a series of deadly incidents in the area last year.
The Ontario Association of Firearm Instructors (OAFI) alleges that James Fergus was in charge of training with the company Gunsmiths Canada Inc. on the weekend of March 4 and 5.
The association says Fergus used the training session as an excuse to sell a gun to an individual at a local shooting range, and was accused of making the sale because he had an obligation to keep the gun safe.
“The training was being used to sell firearms and there was no other purpose other than to get people who were not trained to use firearms to use them,” said David O’Sullivan, OAFI’s executive director.
Fergus is currently charged with three counts of second-degree murder and one count of attempted murder.
The accused shooter, who has not been named in court, was not injured and is currently in custody.
“He was selling his firearm to a customer at a shooting range for $300 to $400.
That was his income,” said O’Sullyson.
“This was not a criminal matter.
This was a training session.”
O’Brien said the two women were training to be security guards at a house for people with mental illness.
The two were killed in a shooting at a home for seniors in Richmond Hill on March 17.
“There were a lot of questions that needed to be answered,” said Fergus.
“I can’t say for certain whether or not I’m guilty, but it wasn’t something that was going to happen with the help of a judge.”
Fergus told CBC News in an interview that the three women’s deaths were not random, but rather, part of a pattern of his business.
“We’ve had a lot, if not all, of people that come into our business,” he said.
“They come in with the intent to do harm, they come in to sell, and we’re trying to help them get through it.”
FERGUS’ OWN GUNS: CANADA’S GUN OWNERS, BY THE NUMBERS The Ontario firearms industry has seen a surge in demand for new weapons since the passage of Bill C-51, the country’s strict gun control legislation.
According to the Ontario Association for Firearms Safety, the industry has jumped by about 15 per cent in the past two years, with a number of new weapons being added to the market.
“Over the past year we’ve seen an increase in the number of manufacturers that have added to their inventory,” said Chris Thorne, executive director of the association.
“A lot of that’s due to new laws being put in place by the government and also the number and variety of new products being introduced.”
Fergus says he doesn’t know how many guns he sells, but he estimates there are around 200 to 300 different firearms in his store.
According the association, he’s not the only person in the business.
There are also a number who are owners of the same guns, but operate independently.
Thorne says that’s something that can be problematic in the industry, and that people are going to come in who are not licensed to do so, which makes the industry difficult to regulate.
“What we’re hoping is that the people that are licensed and are working within the industry will come forward and help us get these firearms into the hands of those that are properly licensed,” said Thorne.
“It’s a lot harder to go and get a licence if there’s somebody else that has a different gun.”
FOUR OTHER PEOPLE ARE COMING OUT OF THE BLUE TO RECOGNIZE THE GUN OWNING MEDIA: BILL, BY ITS REQUIREMENTS, ISSUES The Ontario Firearm Owners Association says it’s not surprising that gun owners have a problem with the legislation.
“With the law, we have to comply with it,” said Rob Meehan, president of the Ontario Firearms Owners Association.
“In a lot this industry, that’s a big issue, and it’s one that we have had a huge problem with for a long time.”
Meehans association has been involved in a number high-profile cases involving gun ownership.
He said the law does not cover licensed owners.
Meehmans association was also one of three gun owners who came out publicly to say they would no longer own firearms.
“People that are concerned about these new laws, they’re going to have to look to the gun industry and say, ‘What are we doing right?'”
Meehamans statement said.
Another gun owner, who wished to remain anonymous, said he also quit gun ownership after the legislation passed.
He believes the legislation has a long way to go before it is implemented properly.
“For the next six months, you’re going not only going to see gun owners