Bart Simpson was lucky to avoid a jail term this week, as Mr. Burns handed down a sentence of community service for carrying a gun through a U.K. airport.
In May last year, Barton Simpson, 56, a company director from Staffordshire, England, was stopped by Birmingham Airport security officials when he tried to board a flight to Croatia with a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver in his hand luggage, reports the Daily Mail.
Simpson later appeared at Warwick Crown Court, where the judge presiding over his case was Mr. Recorder Burns.
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Bart Simpson and Mr. Burns have clashed before — but usually as yellow, four-fingered cartoons on the animated series The Simpsons. In one episode, Bart appeared as a witness in a highly dubious personal injury claim against the billionaire nuclear power plant owner following a traffic accident.
“There were some eyebrows raised when the court list was published,” a court worker told the Mirror.
In this case, though, it seems that Barton Simpson had made an honest mistake.
“The reason he said he had [the gun] with him, and there is no reason to disagree, was that he was having work done on his flat while he was traveling and did not want it to come into the hands of the decorator,” said prosecutor Andrew Wilkins according to the Daily Mail.
Mr. Wilkins said Simpson had planned to leave the gun—which he inherited from his father and which he said he keeps as a curio—locked in his car. But he was distracted due to personal problems including the recent deaths of a friend and of his son, who was a serving soldier.
Simpson was sentenced to 12 months of community service including 140 hours of unpaid work, and he was ordered to pay court fees of £800 ($1,212), reports the Daily Mail.