Cops tighten up gun rules

The Herald reports:

Police have today reacted to a current affairs TV story which exposed how easy it is to buy a gun online without a firearms licence by closing the loophole and bolstering its rules.

Good.

The fact that the journalist used fake details is beside the point. Do we think criminals wanting would worry about signing a form with false details?

There was obviously a problem with the system if Heather can fill in a form, and have a gun arrive in the post, despite having no licence. Claiming you have one is not enough – there must be a robust system to check.

But today, police have announced new rules, which immediately come into force.

Would-be purchasers are now required to physically take their purchase order into a police station and present their firearms licence to be checked by a police arms officer.

“Once police are satisfied, the form will then be passed to the dealer by police following verification,” a statement released to NZME News Service says.

“This will negate any need for dealers to cross check details – though police will be continuing to audit dealers on a regular basis to make sure the system is working appropriately.

It is unclear if the problem was with the gun dealer or the Police, but the system was obviously broken if it could be fooled so easily.

Gun City’s millionaire owner David Tipple told the Herald last night that he would go ahead with a private prosecution against du Plessis-Allan if a police investigation into the current affairs sting decided against prosecution.

“I’m ready for the battle,” he said. “She’s going down 100 per cent.”

He can try. She did break the law but she has a strong public interest defence. I suspect she’d get discharged without conviction.

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