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Firearms surrender in Essex to tackle gun crime rise

People can hand in their guns to Essex Police Credit: PA

A two-week firearms surrender is being held in Essex to help tackle a rise in gun crime.

It will run from Monday 13 November to Sunday 26 November.

Unwanted or unlicensed firearms can be handed in, as well as ammunition, imitation firearms and air or gas-powered weapons.

People who surrender firearms will not face prosecution for illegally possessing them.

Detective Chief Superintendent Rob Fordham said: “In the last three years we’ve seen a concerning rise in the number of offences involving a firearm – from 768 to 900.

“Guns can have a devastating impact on people’s lives as shown by the death of John Pordage in Chelmsford in August.

“We particularly want you to hand in any antique or war trophy weapons from historic conflicts such as World War Two, or more recent ones such as the Falklands, Afghanistan and Gulf wars which retired, or serving, military personnel or their families may still have in their possession."

Weapons can be surrendered at front counters at the police stations in Basildon, Braintree, Chelmsford, Clacton, Colchester, Harlow, Grays and Southend.

Det Chief Supt Fordham added: “As well as real firearms, we are also keen for you to hand in imitation firearms, air weapons and BB guns.

“It can be almost impossible to tell the difference between an imitation firearm and a real one, but when you’re faced with one the fear and concern it causes it just the same.

“This amnesty will help make Essex safer and reduce the chance a member of the public will come face-to-face with one”.