An Irish national has denied possessing an illegal stun gun disguised as a torch.

Thomas Kavanagh, 51, was detained after landing at Birmingham Airport on January 12, as part of a National Crime Agency (NCA) investigation.

Appearing at Stafford Crown Court wearing a grey jumper and blue shirt on Tuesday, he pleaded not guilty to possessing a disguised firearm.

Kavanagh was charged after NCA officers, supported by colleagues from An Garda Siochana, Ireland’s National Police and Security Service, and Staffordshire Police, searched his home address.

A pink-coloured stun gun had been recovered on top of a kitchen cupboard, a previous hearing was told.

Thomas Kavanagh Thomas Kavanagh earlier appeared at Staffordshire Magistrates Court (David Jones/PA)

Judge Michael Chambers QC once again granted him bail at the conclusion of the 15-minute hearing.

The married father-of-six had just returned from a family holiday in Mexico with his wife and children before his arrest.

Kavanagh, of Sutton Road, Mile Oak, Tamworth, Staffordshire, will appear at the same court for his trial on July 8.

A 20-year-old man arrested alongside Kavanagh at Birmingham Airport has been released under investigation, the NCA said.

A third man, aged 19, was also arrested and later released under investigation.