A loaded revolver and a further 20 rounds of ammunition have been seized by Greater Manchester Police’s Xcalibre Taskforce.
Officers also seized quantities of what is believed to be Class A drugs following the stop search and arrest of a man in a series of warrants yesterday, 15 January 2014.
A 32-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of possession of Class A drugs with intent to supply and possession of a firearm and remains in police custody for further questioning.
The recovery and the arrests were made by Greater Manchester Police’s Xcalibre Taskforce, which was set up to tackle gun and gang-related criminality in the Manchester area.
On Wednesday 15 January 2014, officers from Xcalibre stopped a grey Audi on Wharfside Way in Trafford. The 32-year-old man was inside the car and was arrested by officers, who then searched the vehicle.
They discovered a shoulder bag stashed in the front passenger footwell of the car, and inside the bag was a quantity of what is believed to be Class A drugs. These have been sent for forensic analysis.
As part of the operation, officers then executed house searches in the North Wales and Cheshire areas. During a search of a property in the Wilmslow area, officers found the revolver loaded with six bullets hidden in a safe, along with further ammunition and what is also believed to be more Class A drugs.
These too have been sent for further forensic analysis.
Detective Chief Inspector Debbie Dooley said: “We will need to carry out some detailed ballistics checks on the gun to see if it has been used in any previous shootings or criminality, but what we can say with certainty is that seizing this weapon and so many rounds of ammunition has saved lives.
“This weapon was loaded and ready to fire at a second’s notice. In real terms, that means this weapon could have been easily used to seriously injure or even kill someone but because it has been recovered, it means one less gun that could cause serious harm on the streets of Greater Manchester.
“We have all seen the devastating consequences of gun crime, which has robbed families of their loved ones and caused untold misery. However, thanks to the work of the Xcalibre Taskforce and our partners, we have made huge strides in reducing gun crime and tragic incidents where people have lost their lives after being shot.
“What this recovery does show is that we will never ever rest because there will always be people out there who will try and get access to guns, whether to use them for themselves, hide them for others, or sell them on for profit.
“But thanks to the Xcalibre Taskforce, our partners and the vital co-operation we get from people in the community who do not want their area ruined by gun smugglers and criminals, we can take positive action and recover these weapons before they are ever fired.
“If you do have information about the whereabouts of a gun in your area, then please do the right thing and come forward.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.