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Campaign sees 215 unlicensed firearms handed in to Hampshire and Isle of Wight police – with 90 classed as 'viable'

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A CAMPAIGN to take unlicensed firearms off the streets saw more than 200 items handed in to Hampshire and Isle of Wight police.

The constabulary supported a national surrender campaign between 12th and 29th May to prevent them being used for criminality.

The force said in total over 215 items were handed in, with 90 of them "potentially viable".

Some of the items surrendered
Some of the items surrendered

Those surrendered included shotguns, BB guns, air weapons, a possible M16 rifle, a two pump-action shotguns, an AK47 replica and a walking stick shotgun. Ammunition was also surrendered.

Det. Chief Insp. Dave Storey of Hampshire Constabulary said: "Our key aim with the surrender was for the removal of firearms and ammunition in order to reduce overall gun harm within our communities.

"We’ve seen 90 potentially viable firearms surrendered, which is 90 less weapons to fall into criminal hands and be used during the course of serious offences. These deactivated weapons cannot now be reactivated.

"In addition, these weapons present no distinction between real and imitation firearms, which present a deadly risk to persons using them when the police respond to an incident – the AK47 and M16 being relevant examples of such weapons."

He added: "I wish to remind members of the public that it is against the law to be in possession of an unlicensed firearm, regardless of how you acquire it and are reminded that firearms can be surrendered to the police at any time.

"The campaign has been a huge success and we would like to thank the public for their cooperation and contributions."

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