'Hand in your guns' - Suffolk police back national firearms surrender
PUBLISHED: 13:52 19 July 2019 | UPDATED: 14:29 19 July 2019
Supplied by Norfolk and Suffolk police
Suffolk police are backing a national surrender of firearms and ammunition - and are asking anyone with weapons to hand in their guns.
The surrender will run from July 20 to August 4 in an attempt to reduce the availability of illegal firearms for criminals and to try to limit the number of firearms offences across the UK.
Members of the public will be able to hand over any unlicenced weapons - including replica firearms, BB guns, air weapons, component parts, ammunition and ballistic items - without fear of prosecution.
Richard Kennett, Firearms Licensing Manager for Norfolk and Suffolk Constabularies, said: "In Suffolk we permanently encourage and accept the surrender of firearms.
"However, this campaign is a good opportunity to remind people who may have un-registered, old weapons that they have forgotten about, or have received one through inheritance that they no longer use, what to do with them.
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"Although such weapons aren't being used for crimes, it's important that they are handed in to the police to stop them from falling into the wrong hands.
"Fortunately we don't have a big problem with gun crime in Suffolk and reducing the amount of illegally owned firearms across the county will help reduce the threat of gun crime even further."
Firearms can be surrendered at Public Enquiry Offices in Ipswich, Lowestoft and Bury St Edmunds, or to the Firearms Licensing Unit at Police Headquarters in Martlesham during office hours.
Suffolk's Police and Crime Commissioner, Tim Passmore said: "Illegal firearms can have devastating consequences which is why it is so important we keep them out of the hands of criminals.
"Thankfully gun crime is rare in our county but every weapon that is not licensed or properly stored poses a potential threat, so getting rid of them without fear of prosecution is the right thing to do.
"I fully support this national amnesty and would urge anyone who has an unlicensed firearm to take this opportunity to hand it in so it can be safely disposed of."
Police say people should make sure any firearms surrendered are unloaded and covered up, and if possible people are asked to ring the police beforehand on 101 to let officers know that they are bringing a gun in as part of the operation.