Toulouse siege aftermath

The brother of Mohamed Merah has been charged in connection with the murder of seven people. In Toulouse thousands marched for tolerance.

View all 119 updates ›

France 'awash with illegal guns'

Whilst gun laws are strict, it is not difficult for unauthorised members of the public to gain access to weapons. Credit: SOCA

France is "awash with illegal firearms" transported into the country across porous European borders, says the president of Union Francaise des Amateurs d'Armes, a French gun society.

Jean-Jacques Buigne said he did not think the killer responsible for yesterday's attacks had a gun licence.

The killer used a heavy calibre .45 automatic pistol. It would be very complicated to obtain this weapon legally due to strict gun laws, but Buigne says open European borders mean a lot of smuggling takes place. He said:

"It's impossible to obtain authorisation for an arm like that if you're not 'clean'."

"It's very complicated to get a weapon like that legitimately. But in France lots of criminals use illegal arms and no law could change that."

More on this story