Amnesty for unwanted, illegal firearms

2020-02-18 06:02
Unwanted and unlicenced firearms can be dropped off at your nearest police station, without facing prosecution. PHOTO: Samantha Lee-Jacobs

Unwanted and unlicenced firearms can be dropped off at your nearest police station, without facing prosecution. PHOTO: Samantha Lee-Jacobs

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Anyone in possession of an unlicenced or unwanted firearm has until Sunday 31 May to hand it in at any participating police station. The initiative started on Sunday 1 December and within the first month, thousands of firearms and ammunition had already been handed in at police stations across the country.

“As firearms are the instruments commonly used in the commission of crime, especially violent crimes, it is very encouraging that people have taken advantage of this amnesty period,” says Gen Khehla Sitole, national police commissioner, in a statement. By the end of December, 1 465 guns and 14 861 rounds of ammunition had been handed in. The firearms included 1 248 hand guns, 75 shotguns and 142 rifles.

“While the majority of the firearms have been handed in for destruction, we have also received applications for the relicensing of firearms whose licenses have been terminated in terms of Section 28 of the Firearm Control Act for 264 firearms including that of 247 hand guns (revolvers and pistols), eight shotguns and nine rifles,” says Sitole.

“People who are illegally in possession of firearms and ammunition are encouraged to take advantage of this amnesty period to hand over such guns without fear of prosecution. However, any person that hands over a firearm that has been used in the commission of a crime will not enjoy such exoneration.”

All firearms that have been or are being handed in will undergo ballistic testing to ensure that they have not been used in the commission of a crime or crimes before they can be considered for destruction.

The South African Police Service has made adequate provision for the safe-keeping of all firearms handed in.

. There are nine centralised storage facilities in all provinces which have been subjected to risk assessment.

. Designated amnesty officials and police officials have been subjected to thorough screening and vetting, and only those that met the identified criteria have been appointed to handle amnesty firearms handed in. A detective investigative team has been established to investigate cases of firearms linked to crimes.

When the amnesty period ends, firearms will be audited for the purpose of destruction.

The process for the destruction of firearms will then be followed to destroy amnesty firearms, firearm parts and ammunition as it was done when the police smelted over 20 thousand illegal firearms on Tuesday 5 November last year.

“We are confident that more people will come forward with illegal and unwanted guns given that during the festive period we have received this many guns so far,” says Sithole.

V An inquiry desk at the Central Firearm Register call centre has been established to handle all enquiries related to the amnesty. Call 012 353 6111.

Anyone in possession of an unlicenced or unwanted firearm has until Sunday 31 May to hand it in at any participating police station.

The initiative started on Sunday 1 December and within the first month, thousands of firearms and ammunition had already been handed in at police stations across the country.

“As firearms are the instruments commonly used in the commission of crime, especially violent crimes, it is very encouraging that people have taken advantage of this amnesty period,” says Gen Khehla Sitole, national police commissioner, in a statement. By the end of December, 1 465 guns and 14 861 rounds of ammunition had been handed in. The firearms included 1 248 hand guns, 75 shotguns and 142 rifles.

“While the majority of the firearms have been handed in for destruction, we have also received applications for the relicensing of firearms whose licenses have been terminated in terms of Section 28 of the Firearm Control Act for 264 firearms including that of 247 hand guns (revolvers and pistols), eight shotguns and nine rifles,” Sitole says.

“People who are illegally in possession of firearms and ammunition are encouraged to take advantage of this amnesty period to hand over such guns without fear of prosecution. However, any person that hands over a firearm that has been used in the commission of a crime will not enjoy such exoneration.”

All firearms that have been or are being handed in will undergo ballistic testing to ensure that they have not been used in the commission of a crime or crimes before they can be considered for destruction.

The South African Police Service has made adequate provision for the safe-keeping of all firearms handed in.

. There are nine centralised storage facilities in all provinces which have been subjected to risk assessment.

. Designated amnesty officials and police officials have been subjected to thorough screening and vetting, and only those that met the identified criteria have been appointed to handle amnesty firearms handed in. A detective investigative team has been established to investigate cases of firearms linked to crimes.

When the amnesty period ends, firearms will be audited for the purpose of destruction. The process for the destruction of firearms will then be followed to destroy amnesty firearms, firearm parts and ammunition as it was done when the police smelted over 20 thousand illegal firearms on Tuesday 5 November last year.

“We are confident that more people will come forward with illegal and unwanted guns given that during the festive period we have received this many guns so far,” says Sithole.

V An inquiry desk at the Central Firearm Register call centre has been established to handle all enquiries related to the amnesty. Call 012 353 6111.

Anyone in possession of an unlicenced or unwanted firearm has until Sunday 31 May to hand it in at any participating police station. The initiative started on Sunday 1 December and within the first month, thousands of firearms and ammunition had already been handed in at police stations across the country.

“As firearms are the instruments commonly used in the commission of crime, especially violent crimes, it is very encouraging that people have taken advantage of this amnesty period,” says Gen Khehla Sitole, national police commissioner, in a statement. By the end of December, 1 465 guns and 14 861 rounds of ammunition had been handed in. The firearms included 1 248 hand guns, 75 shotguns and 142 rifles.

“While the majority of the firearms have been handed in for destruction, we have also received applications for the relicensing of firearms whose licenses have been terminated in terms of Section 28 of the Firearm Control Act for 264 firearms including that of 247 hand guns (revolvers and pistols), eight shotguns and nine rifles,” says Sitole.

“People who are illegally in possession of firearms and ammunition are encouraged to take advantage of this amnesty period to hand over such guns without fear of prosecution. However, any person that hands over a firearm that has been used in the commission of a crime will not enjoy such exoneration.”

All firearms that have been or are being handed in will undergo ballistic testing to ensure that they have not been used in the commission of a crime or crimes before they can be considered for destruction.

The South African Police Service has made adequate provision for the safe-keeping of all firearms handed in.

. There are nine centralised storage facilities in all provinces which have been subjected to risk assessment.

. Designated amnesty officials and police officials have been subjected to thorough screening and vetting, and only those that met the identified criteria have been appointed to handle amnesty firearms handed in. A detective investigative team has been established to investigate cases of firearms linked to crimes.

When the amnesty period ends, firearms will be audited for the purpose of destruction.

The process for the destruction of firearms will then be followed to destroy amnesty firearms, firearm parts and ammunition as it was done when the police smelted over 20 thousand illegal firearms on Tuesday 5 November last year.

“We are confident that more people will come forward with illegal and unwanted guns given that during the festive period we have received this many guns so far,” says Sithole.

V An inquiry desk at the Central Firearm Register call centre has been established to handle all enquiries related to the amnesty. Call 012 353 6111.

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