A NORTHWICH man has been ordered to complete unpaid work after importing illegal pepper spray weapons from China.

Brad Axford, of Hadfield Street, appeared at Chester Magistrates Court on June 19, where he was sentenced on for a number offences.

Police launched an investigation after a suspicious postal package was seized by the Border Force on October 28 last year, having entered the UK as airfreight from China via the Heathrow Worldwide Distribution Centre in Slough.

The package, which was misleading described as 'care solution', was addressed to Axford and found to be suspected pepper sprays.

After being passed to police and undergoing forensic analysis, the items were confirmed as prohibited weapons, classified as firearms, containing CS irritant spray.

The 20-year-old was arrested at his then Antrobus address on December 5, before officers searched his bedroom discovering a variety of drugs including cocaine, ketamine and flualprazolam (a tranquilliser).

Axford, who was fined in 2022 for bringing an imitation submachine gun into a pub, was charged with purchasing a weapon for the discharge of a noxious gas, as well as possession of class A, B and C drugs.

He was also charged with a further offence of possessing nitrous oxide for wrongful inhalation.

After pleading guilty to all charges on May 2, Axford returned to court last week for sentencing.

Magistrates handed him a 12-month community order, in which he must complete 150 hours of unpaid work and a 19-day thinking skills programme.

He must also complete up to 25 days of rehabilitation activity and pay £85 in court costs.

An order was also made for the forfeiture and destruction of the drugs, which will be carried out by the police.