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U.S. tourists were held in Canadian jail

July 22, 2011 at 8:41 AM   |   Comments

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, July 22 (UPI) -- Two U.S. tourists, one from Texas, the other from California, were held in a Canadian jail for five days on charges of smuggling firearms, officials said.

Texan Danny Cross and Californian Hugh Barr, Cross's brother-in-law, each paid a $50,000 bond to gain their freedom after they were arrested at a Washington state border crossing about 40 miles southeast of Vancouver, the Vancouver Sun reported.

The Canadian Border Service Agency said when officers searched their 2008 Winnebago after the pair said they had nothing to declare, agents found a derringer-type pistol, a revolver, three semi-automatic pistols and a shotgun.

"The travelers did not declare any firearms during the primary examination but firearms were discovered in the vehicle during a secondary examination," CBSA official Stefanie Wudel said.

Border agents stopped the two men and their wives July 11 as they prepared to enter Canada. Neither Cross, 64, nor Barr, 70, has a criminal record.

Joel Whysall, their Vancouver attorney, said both men are retired.

"These are people who have never been in trouble in their lives and they spent five days in the North Surrey Pre-Trial Center with hardened criminals and drug addicts," Whysall said. "They were completely beside themselves and it took their wives five days to raise bail to get them out."

The men were charged with several offenses, including smuggling and possession of loaded, prohibited weapons, which carries a three-year minimum sentence.

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