Citation(s) from the GunPolicy.org literature library
New Zealand. 2017 ‘Introduction.’ Inquiry Into Issues Relating to the Illegal Possession of Firearms in New Zealand; Section I, p. 5. Wellington: 51st Parliament of New Zealand. 1 April
New Zealand has a very low crime rate with firearms, at about 1.4 percent of all violent crime. The Police believe that most illicit firearms in New Zealand have entered the illicit market through theft of individuals' firearms or firearms from dealers' premises, illegal transfer from a licensed owner to an unlicensed owner, or illegal importation into New Zealand.
In 2014/15, there were 242,056 licensed firearm holders in New Zealand. We note that the overriding majority of firearms users in New Zealand are law abiding. Thus, our recommendations aim to reduce the flow of firearms to criminals, gangs, and those who do not have a licence, without unfairly impinging on law-abiding firearms users.
There are three broad categories of firearms in the New Zealand market:
- those that are lawfully possessed by licence holders (with correct endorsements)
- those that are possessed by unlicensed people and are not held or used for criminal purposes ("grey" firearms)
- those that are used by criminals and gangs (unlicensed) in the commission of offences.