Greater Manchester Police received 225 firearms and over 3000 rounds of ammunition during the ‘Give Up The Gun’ firearms amnesty. Of the 225, over 80 weapons were illegally owned.
The haul includes a number of rifles, shotguns, handguns and air weapons as well as some imitation and antique firearms. The most unusual items include a sub machine gun and a shotgun disguised as a walking stick.
The amnesty ran from 12 July – 26 July 2014, where the force asked members of the public to surrender unlawfully held or unwanted guns and ammunition to help prevent them getting into the wrong hands.
The amnesty gave the public the chance to dispose of firearms or ammunition with no questions asked, by simply taking it to a local police station and handing it in. During that period, those surrendering firearms did not face prosecution for the illegal possession and they had the option to remain anonymous.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Greater Manchester Tony Lloyd said:
“We know the misery weapons like these can cause to our communities so it is great news that so many of them have been taken off our streets.
“We have seen a remarkable reduction in the use of firearms in Greater Manchester in recent years, which has come about because police, other agencies and local communities have all worked together to make our streets safer
“This amnesty sends out a clear message that guns have no place in our society.” Tony Lloyd
Detective Chief Inspector Debbie Dooley of the Xcalibre Task Force said:
“This year’s firearm amnesty was a remarkable success and I am delighted that we have managed to remove over 200 weapons from the streets of Greater Manchester.
“Gun crime in Greater Manchester continues to fall year on year. The amnesty may be over, but our war against gun crime is not.
“This is a result of continued efforts from the force and our partners working together to safeguard, educate and intervene at the earliest opportunity.
“We will continue to work hard to make the streets safer and remove guns from our community and we urge the public to help us in this fight.”
Head of the National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NABIS) Det Chief Supt Iain O’Brien said:
“NABIS always fully supports forces who are proactive in tackling gun crime, whether through enforcement activity or preventative actvity such as this amnesty.
“The removal of guns that could fall into the hands of criminals is critical to ensure safer communities.”
Greater Manchester Police and its Xcalibre task force works closely with the firearms licensing department and license holders to support the hundreds of law abiding citizens who already own firearms safely and legally.
DCI Dooley adds:
“We are completely supportive of firearms license holders who own and use guns safely, responsibly and legally.“Put simply, we are not anti-guns, we are anti-gun crime. If you are a license holder or qualified collector of firearms, please conduct regular checks to ensure your weapons are secured and cannot be tampered with.”DCI Dooley stresses that even outside a gun amnesty, members of the public can always hand weapons to the police, whether license holders or otherwise:
“If you come across a weapon during a house clearance, or you perhaps inherit or find a weapon you do not need to wait for an amnesty to get it off the streets – trained staff will always be on hand to secure unwanted weapons. Just call your local police enquiry desk or 101 for assistance.”
- 9 Section 1 firearms (rifles)
- 26 Section 2 (shotguns)
- 51 Section 5 (handguns)
- 3681 rounds of ammunition
- 62 Air weapons
- 70 imitation firearms
- 3 Antique firearms
- 4 Deactivated firearms