A 23-year-old man was acquitted of firearms charges after Toronto criminal lawyer Ryan Handlarski successfully argued the Crown’s main witness was untruthful and ill-informed about guns.

The Ontario provincial court justice acquitted Handlarski’s client of pointing a firearm, possession of a restricted firearm, possession of a firearm or imitation firearm to commit an indictable offence and several related charges after a two-day trial.

The complainant, a casual acquaintance of the accused, claimed he pointed a handgun at her in October 2016 during an argument in his car as he was giving her a lift.

Handlarski, principal with RH Criminal Defence, brought a motion for a directed verdict of acquittal on the firearms charges, arguing there was no evidence the woman had seen a real gun. The judge partially granted his motion by tossing out two “restricted” firearms counts because the definition of a restricted firearm is a technical term and there was no evidence that the firearm met the definition.

The remaining firearms and imitation firearms charges went to trial on the basis that the complainant stated she believed what she saw was a gun, he says.

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