Firearms: Liverpool

Home Office written question – answered on 4th August 2017.

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Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle Labour, Garston and Halewood

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to ensure that Merseyside Police has the funding necessary to tackle the recent change in the level of gun crime in Liverpool.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle Labour, Garston and Halewood

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to respond to the recent changes in the level of gun crime in Merseyside.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle Labour, Garston and Halewood

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent representations she has received from Merseyside Police on tackling gun crime in Liverpool.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle Labour, Garston and Halewood

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent assessment she has made of the potential effect of changes in funding for Merseyside Police on its capacity to tackle rising gun crime in Liverpool.

Photo of Nick Hurd Nick Hurd The Minister of State, Home Department

The Government takes gun crime very seriously. The legislative controls on firearms have recently been strengthened in the Policing and Crime Act 2017 and we are working with law enforcement partners to reduce the threat posed by gun crime.

We have introduced new offences to tackle the unlawful importation and supply of firearms, and the criminal use of imitation firearms and deactivated weapons. We have committed £2 million over two years to the development of new automatic threat detection technology at the UK Border. A multi-agency firearms unit has also been recently established, led jointly by the National Crime Agency and Counter Terrorism Policing, to coordinate law enforcement activity to disrupt the supply of illegal firearms and improve our understanding of the threat.

We are aware of concerns about gun crime on Merseyside and we are working with Merseyside Police and other partners to understand what lies behind the recent local increases in gun crime and whether there is more to be done to address these issues.

With regard to police funding, the 2015 Spending Review protected overall police spending in real terms. It is a matter for Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners to determine how to use their available resources according to local and national priorities.

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