Imitation Firearms

Home Department written question – answered on 9th January 2006.

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Photo of Lynne Featherstone Lynne Featherstone Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Home Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have received a prison sentence for carrying an imitation firearm in each of the last five years.

Photo of Hazel Blears Hazel Blears Minister of State (Home Office) (Policing, Security and Community Safety), Member, Labour Party National Executive Committee

The offence of possessing an imitation firearm in a public place without reasonable excuse was created by an amendment to section 19 of the Firearms Act 1968 which was introduced by section 37(1)(d) of the Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003. The new offence came into force on 20 January 2004.

Since the amendment, the sentencing statistics include data on the new offence under a code that also covers airweapons. Therefore we are unable to provide data for imitation firearms alone. In 2004, 358 people were sentenced for carrying a loaded or unloaded imitation firearm or airweapon in a public place. Of these, 29 were given a custodial sentence.

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