Gun amnesty un­cov­ers relic ri­fles

The West Australian - - NEWS - Gabrielle Knowles

This ri­fle may not be the old­est relic handed in to WA po­lice dur­ing a na­tional gun amnesty but is prob­a­bly one of the most di­lap­i­dated.

The gun and re­mains of two other ri­fles, which were found by a shire worker clean­ing up de­bris at a for­mer abat­toir site in the Mid West town of Wiluna, are among about 540 weapons sur­ren­dered since the amnesty started on July 1.

Po­lice have been told the three rusty ri­fles were be­lieved have been at the old abat­toir since the 1970s.

They would use se­rial numbers to try to trace the ori­gins of the weapons, which were be­lieved to be from about 1900.

Firearms li­cens­ing Insp. Jeff An­dri­ja­se­vich said while some of the firearms handed to au­thor­i­ties were very old, most were in work­ing or­der and would be dan­ger­ous and fright­en­ing if wielded dur­ing a crime.

“We’ve had sawn-off shot­guns, a cou­ple of sawn-off ri­fles and a home­made pis­tol, so it’s great to get those off the streets,” he said.

“I’m par­tic­u­larly happy with the num­ber of hand­guns that are be­ing handed in — al­most 90 so far.

“They’re con­ceal­able, they’re more of a threat in my eyes, but ev­ery firearm we can take off the street that’s un­li­censed is go­ing to im­prove com­mu­nity safety.”

The Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment launched the three-month amnesty amid fears un­se­cured weapons could be used in ter­ror at­tacks.

Insp. An­dri­ja­se­vich said WA held a gun amnesty in 2013 and more than 1200 weapons were handed in.

The di­lap­i­dated ri­fle.

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