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Armed violence prevention, gun control laws and the small arms trade:

Firearm News

United Kingdom

Life for Wife Killer Who Guarded Queen

7 November 1998

Telegraph (UK)

Royal Protection Squad officer who plotted his wife's "callous and cold-hearted murder" as he stood guard outside Buckingham Palace was jailed for life yesterday. Michael Coulton stabbed his wife, Patricia, to death just hours after he returned from Royal duty and then began a charade of acting as a grieving husband. He was told by Mr Justice Wright that he had spent months planning the murder and had then "lied and lied and lied again" to his family, his friends, his... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Telegraph (UK)

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United Kingdom

Gun Controls Urged on Suicide-Risk Farmers

1 October 1998

Telegraph (UK)

Farmers who are known to be depressed should have access to guns restricted, according to says a survey published today. A study of suicides among men and women farmers found that nearly half had shot themselves, although men were more likely to select firearms than women. Prof Keith Hawton of the Department of Psychiatry, Oxford University, says that farmers have a higher risk of suicide than the general population, and believes that their access to guns and other... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Telegraph (UK)

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United Kingdom

Public Give Up 160,000 Guns After Dunblane

3 September 1998

BBC News

More than 160,000 handguns have been given up by their owners since new laws were introduced following the Dunblane massacre, the UK Government has revealed. Legislation outlawing handguns followed the murder of 16 children and their teacher Gwen Mayor by gunman Thomas Hamilton at Dunblane Primary School in Scotland in March 1996. Hamilton then turned the gun on himself. The announcement comes just two days after tough new rules came into effect giving the police more... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: BBC News

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United Kingdom

Britain Imposes Stricter Firearm License Background Checks

1 September 1998

Associated Press

LONDON — Months after imposing a near-total ban on handguns, Britain today tightened checks on those applying for firearms licenses. Police now have the right to seek the full medical history of all applicants, including details of any mental health problems. Every applicant will have to give the names of two people who have known them for at least two years and who support their application. Britain adopted some of the world's toughest gun laws after disturbed... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Associated Press

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United Kingdom

Appeal Against UK Handgun Ban Fails

26 August 1998

Telegraph (UK)

The European Commission of Human Rights has rejected an attempt by nearly two thousand British handgun enthusiasts to overturn last year's decision to outlaw the possession and use of small arms. It has ruled as inadmissible their claims that the 1997 Firearms Bill violated their rights to "peaceful enjoyment of possessions" and that they had been prevented from pursuing their claims for proper compensation for the loss of their weapons. The commission has, however,... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Telegraph (UK)

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United Kingdom

Britain, Never a 'Gun Culture,' Has Banned Most Handguns

12 August 1998

CNN

LONDON — A madman who shot to death 16 children and their teacher at a primary school in Dunblane, Scotland, on March 13, 1996, left their families bereft and changed a nation forever. "It was one of the most shocking things that has ever happened in this country and it united the country in a feeling that we had to do something," said Gill Marshall Andrews of the Gun Control Network. "And I don't think that it would have been possible to make the kind of progress... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: CNN

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United Kingdom

Gun Owners Up in Arms Over Compensation

9 August 1998

BBC News

Gun owners claim they are still waiting for around £100m in compensation for weapons handed in as part of the ban imposed after the shootings at Dunblane. The Firearms (Amendment) Bill extended the handgun ban introduced in the wake of the massacre in Scotland to include all smaller .22 weapons. The delays are being blamed on an insistence on individual valuations for many non-standard firearms, including those adapted for competition. The Home Office says it is... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: BBC News

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United Kingdom

Post Office Man Shot Dead

4 August 1998

Telegraph (UK)

A Post Office investigator was shot dead and another wounded during a raid on a postal worker's house in Shropshire yesterday. The shooting happened when a three-man Royal Mail investigation team arrived at the worker's council house in Oak Drive, Ellesmere, at about 11am. The gunman opened fire at the team, killing one investigator — a 37-year-old man from Cheshire. A second Royal Mail employee, aged 53, was airlifted to hospital after being wounded in the neck. A... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Telegraph (UK)

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United Kingdom

Mail Investigator Shot Dead During Inquiry Into Missing Post

3 August 1998

Independent Television News (ITN) (UK)

One Royal Mail manager was shot dead and a second was critically injured after they called at a house as part of an inquiry into reports of missing post. A third Royal Mail employee over-powered the gunman during a struggle at the address in Ellesmere, Shropshire, this morning. West Mercia police said the dead man was aged 37 and came from Cheshire. The critically injured man, aged 53, was airlifted to hospital after the incident and was tonight undergoing surgery to... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Independent Television News (ITN) (UK)

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United Kingdom

Handguns Go Missing, Says Watchdog

29 July 1998

BBC News

The government spending watchdog has strongly criticised the operation of the Firearms Compensation Scheme, which was set up in the wake of the ban on handguns. A report by the National Audit Office highlights cases of potential fraud and questions whether all weapons have been destroyed. The NAO are to undertake a full investigation, but BBC Radio 4's World at One programme has seen an interim report. Handgun ban The handgun ban was brought in on a wave of public... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: BBC News

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Norway,United Nations

Oslo Arms Talks End With 'Common Understanding'

14 July 1998

Reuters

OSLO — An international meeting of civil servants ended on Tuesday with a document hailed as "a step on the path" towards a crackdown on the global trade of small arms and light weapons. The two-page "agreement of common understanding" among the 21 participating countries sets out a series of measures to strengthen controls in the legal trade of small arms and prevent illicit transfers. "The great number of casualties and the extent of human suffering caused by the... (GunPolicy.org)

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United Kingdom

Murky Life of an International Gun Dealer

14 July 1998

New York Times

LONDON — An athletic-looking Dane, with blond hair, blue eyes and an arrest warrant for armed robbery, hires a British arms dealer with a colorful resume. In Latvia, they buy a Russian cargo plane and have it flown to Bulgaria where it is loaded with 77 cases of weapons, including 300 assault rifles, ammunition, pistols, hand grenades and rocket launchers. The plane then heads east to India. When it gets over the village of Purulia, near Calcutta, the weapons are... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: New York Times

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Norway

Small Arms Conference Drafts Plan for Combating Spread of Weapons

14 July 1998

Associated Press

OSLO, Norway — International control of military small arms must be tightened to stop the weapons from flowing into the hands of criminals and terrorists, a 21-nation congress said Tuesday. The closed-door congress did not make public its proposals for better controls, but called in a statement for preventing the illegal transfer of weapons left over from civil wars or Cold War-era stockpiles. "The uncontrolled used of these weapons causes untold human suffering,"... (GunPolicy.org)

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Norway

Widespread Trade in Illegal Weapons Threatens Peace, Human Rights

13 July 1998

Associated Press

OSLO, Norway — Seeking to stem the spread of light weapons, representatives from 21 countries met today to create a global campaign to control the arms that fuel conflicts around the world. "The great human costs of the excessive accumulation and uncontrolled proliferation of small arms are the major reason for our common concern," Norwegian Deputy Foreign Minister Aslaug Haga said today as she opened the meeting. No one know how many light weapons there are in the... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Associated Press

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United Kingdom

UK Sets Out New Tough Controls on Arms Exports

1 July 1998

Reuters

LONDON — Britain set out plans on Wednesday to tighten controls on arms exports in an attempt to avoid a repetition of the arms-to-Iraq affair which damaged the previous Conservative government. Trade and Industry secretary Margaret Beckett published draft legislation which would, for the first time, give parliament the right to scrutinise changes to restrictions on defence exports. The move follows the report two years ago by Sir Richard Scott into the... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Reuters

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United Kingdom

Film on Guns Abuse Backfires on Reporter

13 June 1998

Scotsman (Edinburgh)

An investigative reporter who deliberately broke the law to expose systematic abuses of the handgun ban imposed in the wake of the Dunblane massacre is facing firearms charges. Derek Jones, who went undercover for a TV documentary to show how gun clubs in Britain were exploiting loopholes in the legislation, was arrested on 3 June for possessing live ammunition and a firearm without a certificate. The main thrust of the Channel 4 film Gun Law was to show that gun... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Scotsman (Edinburgh)

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United Kingdom

Playground Shootings

31 May 1998

Observer (UK)

They sneaked up behind teenager Tundy Smith as he rode home on his mountain bike. The first shot shattered the back of his skull and exited through his eye socket. The second and third broke ribs and narrowly missed his lungs. Remarkably Tundy, an aspiring musician, is still alive. His 15-year-old brother, Simeon, was also lucky. In January a group of youths fired at him indiscriminately. He escaped with a bullet wound to his knee. Neither brother knows the... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Observer (UK)

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United Kingdom,Northern Ireland

Guns and Bullets Top New Northern Ireland Political Agenda

25 May 1998

Reuters

BELFAST — Guns, bullets and explosives — and how to get rid of them — dominated debate in Northern Ireland as it entered the first week of its new political reality on Monday. Just three days since people both sides of the Irish border said a huge "Yes" to a new peace deal, the topic which has crippled progress in the past resurfaced. But the Canadian charged with decommissioning outlawed guerrilla groups' arms, including Semtex explosive thought to be held by... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Reuters

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United Kingdom

G8 Goes to War on Gun-Runners

17 May 1998

Sunday Telegraph (UK)

Leaders of the G8 group of industrialised nations yesterday agreed to consider making arms manufacturers incorporate computerised micro-chips in weapons, to make it easier to track down gun-running and smuggling operations. The move followed a presentation on the threat posed by international crime by Roy Penrose, director-general of the National Crime Squad. Mr Penrose addressed prime ministers and presidents, led by Tony Blair, at Weston Park, Staffordshire, a... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Sunday Telegraph (UK)

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United Kingdom

Nine Officers Suspended in Payouts Inquiry: Corruption Scandal Hits Police Over Gun Claims

16 May 1998

Yorkshire Post (UK)

Police in South Yorkshire are facing a major corruption scandal over revelations that hundreds of gun compensation claims handled by the force are suspected of being fraudulent. The scale of the suspected fraud is a major embarrassment to the force, which was entrusted with processing claims which totalled hundreds of thousands of pounds of public money. It follows the ban on gun ownership imposed after the Dunblane massacre. The Yorkshire Post understands that an... (GunPolicy.org)

Read More: Yorkshire Post (UK)

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