AK-47 dropped off at Suffolk police station during gun surrender
PUBLISHED: 14:06 30 November 2017 | UPDATED: 18:35 30 November 2017
An AK-47 assault rifle and a gun concealed in a walking stick were among an arsenal of weapons handed in to police during a two-week firearms surrender.
The campaign urged people to hand in unlicensed weapons, without fear of prosecution, in an effort to reduced the risk of guns falling into criminal hands.
Among the haul of 488 guns and a large quantity of ammunition deposited across Suffolk and Norfolk, were an AK-47 fully automatic assault rifle, dropped off in Bury St Edmunds, and a gun disguised as a walking stick, surrendered in Wymondham.
A total of 208 firearms were surrendered in Suffolk, where the campaign launched on November 13 with an appeal for people to give up unwanted firearms, war trophy weapons, imitation guns, BB, air or gas-powered guns.
Most of the guns and ammunition were destroyed at Suffolk police headquarters, in Martlesham Heath, on Thursday this week, while those of particular historic value will be donated to a licensed museum.
Before being destroyed, the history of each live weapon was checked to rule out any involvement in crime. It is believed none of the weapons were found to have criminal links.
Richard Kennett, firearms manager for Norfolk and Suffolk, said: “The surrender was a real success and we’re extremely pleased with how many firearms have been handed in.
“We had 225 shotguns handed in, as well as 38 handguns, including a number of self-loading pistols, an AK47 fully automatic assault rifle and even a walking stick gun.
“Although gun crime isn’t a big problem in our counties, it’s important we take measures such as this to reduce the chances of dangerous weapons falling into the wrong hands.”
A number of imitation firearms, rifles, air weapons and deactivated firearms were also handed in at police stations – one wrapped in a page of the August 4, 1969 edition of the Ipswich Star (then the Evening Star).
In Suffolk, firearms could be surrendered at police stations, or public enquiry offices at Martlesham headquarters, Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich or Lowestoft.
For more on firearms law, visit the National Ballistics Intelligence Service website at nabis.police.uk/legislation.
For further advice from Suffolk Constabulary, call the firearms department on 01473 613681.