The release of the Royal Commission of Inquiry report that looked into why the Police granted a gun license to the man who then committed the massacre on March the 15th last year is just the start, according to the Sporting Shooters Association of New Zealand [SSANZ].
President Neville Dodd says “The Dept of Internal Affairs on behalf of the Commission says “The Royal Commission’s report has been written so that it can be published in full without the need for redaction to protect national security or privacy or confidentiality matters.” We therefore question why the Minister is being so vague about the release date. What is concerning the Government so much that they are delaying the release of the report to ordinary New Zealanders?
Dodd also says “there are also many questions Police need to answer, for example why don’t they know how many firearms are in New Zealand? They are given lists of firearm types and serial numbers for all firearms when they are imported. This is a requirement imposed on firearms dealers.” The dealers are required to notify the Police within 30 days of details, including serial numbers, of all firearms legally imported.
He also adds “Police do keep records of all reported stolen firearms, but it seems they aren’t making the list available as they prefer to destroy any weapons involved in court cases.”
“On that subject, Police are required by law to inform insurance companies of any recovered stolen forearms, but we understand Police ceased that several years ago”
Further to that, it seems that Police are destroying the stolen firearms that they recover instead of returning them to the rightful owners in an attempt to show the public and officials that they are taking a hard line on “illegal” guns.
Dodd says the Police clearly have a problem trying to account for illegally imported firearms.
“We understand that more firearms are recovered every year than those reported as stolen. If so, that refutes claims by the Police Association and Police themselves that gangs and other undesirables rely on theft from Licensed Firearms Owners for their supply of illicit guns.” It also points to there being an illegal importing pipeline in place for criminal gangs and Police are unable to put a stop to it”.
“Police recently put out a regional South Pacific report that claimed New Zealand was a regional hub for drug and gun smuggling” says Dodd, “That suggests to everyone that they are losing the battle and have no idea what to do next”