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Amnesty ineffective

Martin Rosenbaum | 10:18 UK time, Thursday, 7 December 2006

As the BBC has been reporting this morning, the recent Police knife amnesty seems to have had no significant impact on knife-related crime.

This is according to an assessment we obtained from the Metropolitan Police under freedom of information.

We also obtained a Met Police review of the national gun amnesty held in April 2003. This provides a similar picture of the amnesty not having a significant impact on crime levels.

This review states:

* Although they offer reassurance to the public and do remove potentially lethal weapons from circulation, gun amnesties have little impact on gun crime. Most guns surrendered are disused weapons. Amnesties are not attractive to criminals who use firearms.

* Amnesties are not an effective means of obtaining forensic evidence. The Forensic Science Service does not have the resources to examine all weapons surrendered.

The release of both these reports by the Met Police illustrates how freedom of information can lead to better-informed public debate about what are effective means to tackle violent crime.

Comments   Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 07:17 AM on 09 Dec 2006,
  • Bob Finbow wrote:

Amnesties will not work as long as there are endless do-gooders waiting to find an excuse for people committing the crimes they do. In this country there is no possible acceptable reason for carrying a gun. It therefore follows that there can be no mitigating circumstance. Anyone found in possession of a gun should simply be locked up and the key thrown away. No luxuries, no entertainment - just let then rot. The high cost of prisons is due to the 'Human Rights' insistence o mollycoddling prisoners. Gun carriers should have no 'human rights' in this country. A few treated like this and only the terminally stupid will carry guns - and these are unlikely to change because of an amnesty

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