HC Deb 27 October 2003 vol 412 c120WS
Mr. Rosindell

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what action he is taking to prevent the illegal trade in guns. [134002]

Caroline Flint

We are taking forward a programme to tackle gun crime on a number of fronts. This includestackling the links to drug supply and crime through initiatives such as the Criminal Justice Interventions Programme and the National Crack Plan; reducing the supply and availability of firearms; effective police operations to drive down firearm offences; tough laws and effective enforcement; engaging the worst affected communities to address the underlying gun culture.

The firearms amnesty during April this year resulted in 44,000 guns and over a million rounds of ammunition being handed in. This included 5,700 handguns, the weapons most often used in gun crime, and 795 other prohibited weapons.

The Criminal Justice Bill includes proposals for a five-year minimum sentence for anybody convicted of illegally possessing, selling or manufacturing prohibited firearms.

This will send a clear message that we will not tolerate the illegal proliferation of guns within our society.