Firearms amnesty as United Kingdom gun crime rises 27% this year

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Norfolk and Suffolk Police are asking people to hand in their guns, as they support a national surrender on firearms and ammunition.

Police officers across the United Kingdom are urging people to hand in any unwanted firearms, including handguns, shotguns and antique weapons, to "prevent them from falling into criminal hands". However others are acquired and distributed by criminal networks to threaten or harm their local communities.

Weapons can be surrendered at all of County Durham and Darlington's police stations, except Newton Aycliffe - check the station opening times in advance on the force website.

Detective Superintendent Steve Williams, North Wales Police said: "Given the largely rural setting of our area, it may well be that people hold unlicensed firearms that have been handed down to them from relatives for example".

"Many of these weapons may have been previously overlooked, perhaps as antiques or out of date equipment, but they still have the potential to cause harm in our communities".

"By participating in the surrender, people can be confident that items have been safely disposed of".

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Beverley Hughes, Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, said: "There are still too many gun related incidents occurring across Greater Manchester, with 28 since April". We want as many weapons as possible and would encourage people to hand them in.

Superintendent Glyn Fernquest said: "Whilst we don't experience a high level of gun crime in Gwent, we are joining forces with our partners in Wales and across the United Kingdom to support the national NABIS Fire Arm Surrender 2017".

During the two-week period, people handing over firearms will not face prosecution for illegal possession and can remain anonymous.

The history of each live weapon will be checked for evidence of prior use associated with crime.

"This surrender gives people an opportunity to safely and anonymously dispose of firearms and ammunition in a safe environment." .

"Handing in these potentially fatal weapons is an important step and I would urge residents to make the right decision and hand over any illegal firearms they are in possession of".

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"While crimes involving firearms in Hampshire are rare, we know that every firearm poses a potential threat if they are not licensed and stored safely".

Nabis head Detective Chief Superintendent Jo Chilton said: "Surrendering unwanted or illegal firearms avoids the risk of them becoming involved in crime and means that members of the community can dispose of them in a safe place".

McMillan said, 'I am urging anyone with an unwanted firearm to hand it over to police.

The amnesty comes less than a month after national figures revealed the number of crimes involving firearms in England and Wales increased by 27% to 6,696 in the year ending June 2017. "Remember that outside of the surrender period if police find you in possession of a firearm without a current certificate then you may be subject of court proceedings which may lead to a custodial sentence".

NABIS and police forces across the United Kingdom are working with partners such as the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the Local Government Association (LGA), to ensure the surrender fortnight of action is a success.

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