By Simon Franc
Over the past year we have noted that the number of people being wrongly charged with the possession of a dangerous air weapon under the Firearms Rules 1969 has risen sharply.
There are several scientific arguments to counter these charges. For example:
Furthermore, when test results are not significantly over the legal limit, it is useful for a forensic firearms expert to state that a person firing the air weapon may not have recognised its power increase or to give another example, if an air weapon has not been used for a period of time its natural aging and the conditions of storage may have caused it to fire at above 12ft/lbs.
The argument of lethality is also crucial when defending against criminal charges related to air weapons. There is no definition of lethality within the UK Firearms Legislation. As such it is critical that a firearms expert with significant casework experience, who has examined vast numbers of weapons, provides a more realistic assessment of a weapons potential lethality.
We have provided evidence for the defence on numerous incidents where the prosecution have pursued charges for possession of an air weapon under the Firearms (Dangerous Air Weapons) Rules 1969
To ensure all aspects of air weapon cases are interpreted and reported correctly it is crucial to instruct a firearms expert with significant experience in reviewing evidence for the defence and instruct them to review the Prosecution’s case and conduct new weapons testing.
Our firearms experts have years of unrivalled practical knowledge and expertise to assist your client, should they be charged with possession of a Dangerous Air Weapon. They are also undoubtedly experienced expert witnesses who can be relied on to robustly defend your client’s case in court, if required.