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Offensive Weapons: Sales

Home Office written question – answered on 27th February 2017.

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Photo of Michelle Donelan Michelle Donelan Conservative, Chippenham

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps the Government is taking to control the sale of knives and other prohibited bladed items online.

Photo of Sarah Newton Sarah Newton The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department

There are strict laws on the sales and marketing of knives which apply whether a knife is sold online or in-store. In addition, selling knives to under 18s (with the exception of folding pocket knives with a cutting edge not exceeding 3 inches) is a criminal offence which carries a maximum sentence of six months in prison. It is also an offence to manufacture, import or sell any item listed on the prohibited offensive weapons list.

The Government continues to work with the police and partners, including retailers to ensure we have strong controls in place to prevent sales of knives to under 18s. In March 2016 we agreed a set of commitments with major retailers to prevent the underage sales of knives more generally in their stores and online. The commitments include a requirement to have robust measures in place to ensure age verification for sales, in-store and online.

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