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Firearms Council Seeking Facts On Policies

The Chairman of the Council of Licensed Firearms Owners, Mr Michael Reeves said that his council would not support any political party in the forthcoming general election.

"We have begun discussions with the major political parties to find out what their policies are about firearms," Mr Reeves said.

"When their policies are settled we will make them available to our members so they can make up their own minds. Every licensed firearms owner has a vote and it is up to them to decide how they use it." (There is estimated to be 250,000 licensed firearms users and some 480,000 involved in the sport).

"In the interim we are trying to encourage the Government to increase the penalties for the misuse of firearms".

"In particular we want a mandatory and cumulative prison sentence for everyone who uses a firearm while committing a crime" Mr Reeves said.

"Getting tougher with law abiding sporting firearms users is counter productive, as has been found in the UK and Australia. What is needed is help for and restrictions on the mentally disturbed and longer prison sentences for criminals who misuse guns."

"These policy changes would cost less and be a more effective use of tax payers funds."

Colfo was also strongly against the proposal for individual firearms registration simply because it was very costly, didn't work anywhere it had been tried, and one certainty was that criminals would not register their guns. They didn't even license them now.

"However the policy of the council, which represents all the major shooting groups in the country, is that we will consider and publish every political party's position, but we will not back any party. That is the prerogative of our members," he said.

ENDS

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