Citation(s) from the literature library

Alpers, Philip and Conor Twyford. 2003 ‘Stockpiles and Trafficking in the Pacific.’ Small Arms in the Pacific; Occasional Paper No. 8, p. 17. Geneva: Small Arms Survey, the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva. 31 March

Relevant contents

Smuggling - Australia

In the 2001/2002 financial year, Australian customs authorities seized 812 illegally imported firearms, including 204 handguns, nearly three times the number seized in the previous year (O'Loughlin, 2002a). A study by the Australian Institute of Criminology found that the greater percentage of firearms smuggled into Australia are imported as parts by mail from the United States (Mouzos, 1999, p. 4).

Popular opinion in Australia holds that many of the illegal firearms used in serious crime have been smuggled from overseas, particularly from China. This is not supported by the evidence. Firearms seized at crime scenes and in routine policing can commonly be traced back to licensed Australian owners and arms importers. China's Norinco brand has for many years been one of Australia's more popular legal gun imports. In the absence of concerted crime gun tracing, the true origins of illicit firearms remain uncertain.


O'Loughlin, Tony. 2002a. 'Plan To Fight American Gun Disease.' Sydney Morning Herald. 19 April.

Mouzos, Jenny. 1999. International Traffic in Small Arms: An Australian Perspective. Australian Institute of Criminology Trends and Issues Paper No. 104. Canberra, February.

ID: Q2078

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