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Thread: The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006

  1. #1
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    Default The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006

    For info only & has been locked, will be updated as soon as more info is published.

    Due to be Implemented 1st October 2007

    Imitation firearms

    Section 36 - Manufacture, import and sale of realistic imitation firearms

    A person is guilty of an offence if
    (a) he manufactures a realistic imitation firearm;
    (b) he modifies an imitation firearm so that it becomes a realistic imitation firearm;
    (c) he sells a realistic imitation firearm; or
    (d) he brings a realistic imitation firearm into Great Britain or causes one to be brought
    into Great Britain.


    Any realistic imitation firearm brought into the UK shall be liable to forfeiture under the Customs and Excise Acts
    Guidance - Regulations are likely to follow outlining finer details and possible exemptions e.g. for imitations to be brought into the UK for air soft skirmishing sports and for producing blank firing devices for dog training. There may also be technical specifications produced in relation to design and a requirement for items to be a certain colour to prevent new items resembling a realistic imitation. Specific defences for recognised activities are detailed in the section below. Importations of realistic imitation firearms for specific purposes are likely to need an import permit. HM Customs and the Dept of Trade and Industry will produce guidance later this year.
    Section 37 - Specific defences applying to the offence of importing and sale of
    realistic imitation firearms
    It shall be a defence for a person charged with an offence to show that the importation and sale
    was for the purpose only of making the imitation firearm available for one or more of the
    purposes specified below;
    (a) the purposes of a museum or gallery;
    (b) the purposes of theatrical performances and of rehearsals for such performances;
    (c) the production of films (within the meaning of Part 1 of the Copyright, Designs and
    Patents Act 1988 (c. 48) - see section 5B of that Act);
    (d) the production of television programmes (within the meaning of the Communications
    Act 2003 (c. 21) - see section 405(1) of that Act);
    (e) the organisation and holding of historical re-enactments organised and held by
    persons specified or described for the purposes of this section by regulations made by the Secretary of State;
    (f) the purposes of functions that a person has in his capacity as a person in the service of Her Majesty.
    It shall also be a defence for a person charged with an offence for the importation and sale
    falling within part (d) above to show that the importation and sale;
    (a) was in the course of carrying on any trade or business; and
    (b) was for the purpose of making the imitation firearm in question available to be
    modified in a way which would result in its ceasing to be a realistic imitation firearm.

    Definitions of historical re-enactment and museum or gallery are provided in the Act.
    Guidance - Regulations are likely to follow outlining further detail. Importations are restricted to businesses only and not individuals.
    Section 38 - Meaning of a Realistic Imitation Firearm


    “realistic imitation firearm” means an imitation firearm which -
    (a) has an appearance that is so realistic as to make it indistinguishable, for all practical
    purposes, from a real firearm; and
    (b) is neither a de-activated firearm nor itself an antique.
    For the purposes of this section, an imitation firearm is not (except by virtue of paragraph (b)
    above) to be regarded as distinguishable from a real firearm for any practical purpose if it could
    be so distinguished only
    (a) by an expert;
    (b) on a close examination; or
    (c) as a result of an attempt to load or to fire it.
    In determining for the purposes of this section whether an imitation firearm is distinguishable
    from a real firearm -
    (a) the matters that must be taken into account include any differences between the size,
    shape and principal colour of the imitation firearm and the size, shape and colour in
    which the real firearm is manufactured; and
    (b) the imitation is to be regarded as distinguishable if its size, shape or principal colour
    is unrealistic for a real firearm.


    Definitions of de-activated, real firearm and colour are provided in the Act.
    Guidance - Regulations may follow to provide exemptions and finer detail.
    Section 39 - Specification for imitation firearms

    A person is guilty of an offence if
    (a) he manufactures an imitation firearm which does not conform to the specifications
    required of it by regulations under this section;
    (b) he modifies an imitation firearm so that it ceases to conform to the specifications so
    required of it;
    (c) he modifies a firearm to create an imitation firearm that does not conform to the
    specifications so required of it; or
    (d) he brings an imitation firearm which does not conform to the specifications so
    required of it into Great Britain or causes such an imitation firearm to be brought into
    Great Britain.

    Any imitation firearm brought into Great Britain which does not conform to the specifications shall be liable to forfeiture under the customs and excise Acts.
    Guidance - Regulations are to follow providing specifications to which imitation firearms will have to conform.
    Section 40 Supplying imitation firearms to minors

    It is an offence for a person under the age of eighteen to purchase an imitation firearm.
    It is an offence to sell an imitation firearm to a person under the age of eighteen. It is a defence
    to show that the person charged with the offence
    (a) believed the other person to be aged eighteen or over; and
    (b) had reasonable ground for that belief.
    Section 41 - Increase of maximum sentence for possessing an imitation firearm
    For the possession of an imitation firearm in a public place 12 months or a fine or both and inany other case, 7 years or a fine, or both.

    23. Section 38 defines a “realistic imitation firearm” as an imitation firearm which has an appearance that is so realistic as to make it indistinguishable, for all practical purposes, from a real firearm. “Imitation firearm” is defined in section 57(4) of the Firearms 1968 as “any thing which has the appearance of being a firearm…whether or not it is capable of discharging any shot, bullet or other missile”. The term “real firearm” is defined in section 38(7) as either a firearm of an actual make or model of a modern firearm, or a generic modern firearm. The term “modern firearm” is defined in subsection 8 as a firearm other than one whose appearance would tend to identify it as having a design and mechanism of a sort first dating before 1870. The effect of this definition is that realistic imitations of pre-1870 firearms are not caught by the new offence. Deactivated firearms and antique imitations (such as old dummy rifles used for drill practice) are expressly excluded from the definition of realistic imitation firearm and are therefore not affected by the new offence either.

    24. Whether an imitation firearm falls within the definition of a realistic imitation firearm should be judged from the perspective of how it looks at the point of manufacture, import or sale and not how it might be appear if it were being misused - for example, in the dark and from a distance. Subsection 2 provides that an imitation firearm should not be regarded as distinguishable from a real firearm if only an expert can tell the difference or the difference is only apparent on close examination or as a result of attempting to load or fire it. Subsection 3 provides that in determining whether an imitation firearm is realistic, its size, shape and principal colour must be taken into account, and it is to be regarded as realistic if these features are unrealistic for a real firearm.

    25. Subsection 4 gives the Secretary of State a power to make regulations specifying dimensions and colours that will be regarded as unrealistic. This is designed to provide business with a degree of certainty over what they can trade in. The aforementioned Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Realistic Imitation Firearms) Regulations 2007 specify the following dimensions and colours:

    - a height of 38mm and a length of 70mm. An imitation firearm with dimensions less than this is to be regarded as unrealistic;
    - transparent;
    - bright red;
    - bright orange;
    - bright blue
    - bright yellow;
    - bright green;
    - bright pink;
    - bright purple; and


    26. An imitation firearm whose principal colour is not one of those listed in the regulations does not automatically fall to be regarded as realistic, although it is more likely that will be the case. In these circumstances, the general test of whether it is distinguishable from a real firearm, taking into account its size, colour etc, should be applied. It is worth keeping in mind that the intention behind this measure is to stop the supply of imitations which look so realistic that they are being used by criminals to threaten and intimidate their victims.

    27. The definition of realistic imitation firearm given in the VCR Act and the colours and dimensions specified in the regulations relate only to the new offence of manufacturing, importing, modifying or selling such items. They are not intended to affect in any way the definition of an imitation firearm in section 57(4) of the Firearms Act 1968 or how that definition is applied elsewhere in firearms law – for example, in firearms offences such as sections 16A, 17, 18, 19 and 20 of the 1968 Act. The fact that a bright pink imitation firearm is not regarded as being realistic under the VCR Act provisions would not in itself stop it being regarded as an imitation in the commission of one of these offences.
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  3. #2
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    Default VCR ACT 2006 (Firearms FULL)

    Part 2

    Weapons etc.

    Dangerous weapons

    28 Using someone to mind a weapon (1) A person is guilty of an offence if—
    (a) he uses another to look after, hide or transport a dangerous weapon for him; and
    (b) he does so under arrangements or in circumstances that facilitate, or are intended to facilitate, the weapon’s being available to him for an unlawful purpose.
    (2) For the purposes of this section the cases in which a dangerous weapon is to be regarded as available to a person for an unlawful purpose include any case where—
    (a) the weapon is available for him to take possession of it at a time and place; and
    (b) his possession of the weapon at that time and place would constitute, or be likely to involve or to lead to, the commission by him of an offence.
    (3) In this section “dangerous weapon” means—
    (a) a firearm other than an air weapon or a component part of, or accessory to, an air weapon; or
    (b) a weapon to which section 141 or 141A of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (c. 33) applies (specified offensive weapons, knives and bladed weapons).
    (4) In its application to Scotland, this section has effect with the omission of subsection (3)(b), and of the word “or” immediately preceding it.
    29 Penalties etc. for offence under s. 28 (1) This section applies where a person (“the offender”) is guilty of an offence under section 28.
    (2) Where the dangerous weapon in respect of which the offence was committed is a weapon to which section 141 or 141A of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (specified offensive weapons, knives and bladed weapons) applies, the offender shall be liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 4 years or to a fine, or to both.
    (3) Where—
    (a) at the time of the offence, the offender was aged 16 or over, and
    (b) the dangerous weapon in respect of which the offence was committed was a firearm mentioned in section 5(1)(a) to (af) or (c) or section 5(1A)(a) of the 1968 Act (firearms possession of which attracts a minimum sentence),
    the offender shall be liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or to a fine, or to both.
    (4) On a conviction in England and Wales, where—
    (a) subsection (3) applies, and
    (b) the offender is aged 18 or over at the time of conviction,
    the court must impose (with or without a fine) a term of imprisonment of not less than 5 years, unless it is of the opinion that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which justify its not doing so.
    (5) In relation to times before the commencement of paragraph 180 of Schedule 7 to the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 (c. 43), the reference in subsection (4) to a sentence of imprisonment, in relation to an offender aged under 21 at the time of conviction, is to be read as a reference to a sentence of detention in a young offender institution.
    (6) On a conviction in England and Wales, where—
    (a) subsection (3) applies, and
    (b) the offender is aged under 18 at the time of conviction,
    the court must impose (with or without a fine) a term of detention under section 91 of the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 (c. 6) of not less than 3 years, unless it is of the opinion that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which justify its not doing so.
    (7) On a conviction in Scotland, where—
    (a) subsection (3) applies, and
    (b) the offender is aged 21 or over at the time of conviction,
    the court must impose (with or without a fine) a sentence of imprisonment of not less than 5 years, unless it is of the opinion that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which justify its not doing so.
    (8) On a conviction in Scotland, where—
    (a) subsection (3) applies, and
    (b) the offender is aged under 21 at the time of conviction and is not a person in whose case subsection (9) applies,
    the court must impose (with or without a fine) a sentence of detention under section 207 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 46) of not less than 3 years, unless it is of the opinion that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which justify its not doing so.
    (9) On a conviction in Scotland, where—
    (a) subsection (3) applies, and
    (b) the offender is, at the time of conviction, both aged under 18 and subject to a supervision requirement,
    the court must impose (with or without a fine) a sentence of detention under section 208 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 of not less than 3 years, unless it is of the opinion that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which justify its not doing so.
    (10) In any case not mentioned in subsection (2) or (3), the offender shall be liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years or to a fine, or to both.
    (11) Where—
    (a) a court is considering for the purposes of sentencing the seriousness of an offence under section 28, and
    (b) at the time of the offence the offender was aged 18 or over and the person used to look after, hide or transport the weapon was not,
    the court must treat the fact that that person was under the age of 18 at that time as an aggravating factor (that is to say, a factor increasing the seriousness of the offence).
    (12) Where a court treats a person’s age as an aggravating factor in accordance with subsection (11), it must state in open court that the offence was aggravated as mentioned in that subsection.
    (13) Where—
    (a) an offence under section 28 of using another person for a particular purpose is found to have involved that other person’s having possession of a weapon, or being able to make it available, over a period of two or more days, or at some time during a period of two or more days, and
    (b) on any day in that period, an age requirement was satisfied,
    the question whether subsection (3) applies or (as the case may be) the question whether the offence was aggravated under this section is to be determined as if the offence had been committed on that day.
    (14) In subsection (13) the reference to an age requirement is a reference to either of the following—
    (a) the requirement of subsection (3) that the offender was aged 16 or over at the time of the offence;
    (b) the requirement of subsection (11) that the offender was aged 18 or over at that time and that the other person was not.
    (15) In its application to Scotland, this section has effect with the omission of subsection (2), and of the reference to it in subsection (10).
    Minimum sentences for firearms offences

    30 Minimum sentences for certain firearms offences (1) The 1968 Act is amended as follows.
    (2) In section 51A (which imposes minimum sentence requirements for certain offences involving the possession of various firearms), in subsection (1)—
    (a) in paragraph (a)(ii), for “and” substitute “or”;
    (b) after paragraph (a)(ii) insert—
    “(iii) an offence under any of the provisions of this Act listed in subsection (1A) in respect of a firearm or ammunition specified in section 5(1)(a), (ab), (aba), (ac), (ad), (ae), (af) or (c) or section 5(1A)(a) of this Act, and”.
    (3) After that subsection insert—
    “(1A) The provisions are—
    (a) section 16 (possession of firearm with intent to injure);
    (b) section 16A (possession of firearm with intent to cause fear of violence);
    (c) section 17 (use of firearm to resist arrest);
    (d) section 18 (carrying firearm with criminal intent);
    (e) section 19 (carrying a firearm in a public place);
    (f) section 20(1) (trespassing in a building with firearm).”
    (4) In Schedule 6 (prosecution and punishment of offences) in column 3, in paragraph (a) of the entries relating to sections 19 and 20(1), after “Summary”, in each place, insert “except if the firearm is a firearm specified in section 5(1)(a), (ab), (aba), (ac), (ad), (ae) or (af) or section 5(1A)(a) of this Act.”
    (5) This section applies only to offences committed after the commencement of this section.
    .
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    Default Re: VCR ACT 2006 (Firearms FULL)

    Air weapons

    31 Prohibition on sale or transfer of air weapons except by registered dealers (1) In subsection (1) of section 3 of the 1968 Act (offence for a person other than a registered firearms dealer to sell etc. a firearm or ammunition by way of trade or business), at the end of paragraph (b) insert “or
    (c) sells or transfers an air weapon, exposes such a weapon for sale or transfer or has such a weapon in his possession for sale or transfer,”.
    (2) In section 40(2) of that Act (which excludes air weapons from the requirements to keep a register of transactions), omit the words from “to firearms” to “therein”.
    (3) In section 57(4) of that Act (interpretation), in the definition of “firearms dealer”, for the words from “manufactures” onwards substitute—
    “(a) manufactures, sells, transfers, repairs, tests or proves firearms or ammunition to which section 1 of this Act applies or shot guns; or
    (b) sells or transfers air weapons.”
    32 Sales of air weapons by way of trade or business to be face to face (1) This section applies where a person sells an air weapon by way of trade or business to an individual in Great Britain who is not registered as a firearms dealer.
    (2) A person is guilty of an offence if, for the purposes of the sale, he transfers possession of the air weapon to the buyer otherwise than at a time when both—
    (a) the buyer, and
    (b) either the seller or a representative of his,
    are present in person.
    (3) The reference in subsection (2) to a representative of the seller is a reference to—
    (a) a person who is employed by the seller in his business as a registered firearms dealer;
    (b) a registered firearms dealer who has been authorised by the seller to act on his behalf in relation to the sale; or
    (c) a person who is employed by a person falling within paragraph (b) in his business as a registered firearms dealer.
    (4) A person guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable—
    (a) on summary conviction in England and Wales, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks or to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or to both; and
    (b) on summary conviction in Scotland, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or to both.
    (5) In relation to an offence committed before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (c. 44), the reference in subsection (4)(a) of this section to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.
    33 Age limits for purchase etc. of air weapons (1) The 1968 Act is amended as follows.
    (2) For section 22(1) (acquisition and possession of firearms by minors) substitute—
    “(1) It is an offence—
    (a) for a person under the age of eighteen to purchase or hire an air weapon or ammunition for an air weapon;
    (b) for a person under the age of seventeen to purchase or hire a firearm or ammunition of any other description.”
    (3) In subsection (4) of that section, for “seventeen” substitute “eighteen”.
    (4) For section 24(1) (supplying firearms to minors) substitute—
    “(1) It is an offence—
    (a) to sell or let on hire an air weapon or ammunition for an air weapon to a person under the age of eighteen;
    (b) to sell or let on hire a firearm or ammunition of any other description to a person under the age of seventeen.”
    (5) In subsection (4) of that section in paragraphs (a) and (b), for “seventeen” substitute “eighteen”.
    (6) In the table in Part 1 of Schedule 6 (punishment)—
    (a) in the entry for section 22(1), in the second column, at the end insert “or person under 18 acquiring air weapon”;
    (b) in the entry for section 22(4), in the second column, for “17” substitute “18”;
    (c) in the entry for section 24(1), in the second column, at the end insert “or an air weapon to a person under 18”;
    (d) in the entry for section 24(4), in the second column, for “17” substitute “18”.
    34 Firing an air weapon beyond premises (1) The 1968 Act is amended as follows.
    (2) After section 21 (possession of firearms by persons previously convicted of crime) insert—
    “21A Firing an air weapon beyond premises (1) A person commits an offence if—
    (a) he has with him an air weapon on any premises; and
    (b) he uses it for firing a missile beyond those premises.
    (2) In proceedings against a person for an offence under this section it shall be a defence for him to show that the only premises into or across which the missile was fired were premises the occupier of which had consented to the firing of the missile (whether specifically or by way of a general consent).”
    (3) In section 23 (exceptions from section 22(4))—
    (a) in subsection (1), for paragraphs (a) and (b) substitute “for the person under whose supervision he is to allow him to use it for firing any missile beyond those premises.”;
    (b) after that subsection insert—
    “(1A) In proceedings against a person for an offence under subsection (1) it shall be a defence for him to show that the only premises into or across which the missile was fired were premises the occupier of which had consented to the firing of the missile (whether specifically or by way of a general consent).”;
    (c) omit subsection (4).
    (4) In the table in Part 1 of Schedule 6 (punishment), after the entry for section 21(5) insert—
    “Section 21A Person making improper use of air weapon Summary A fine of level 3 on the standard scale Paragraphs 7 and 8 of Part II of this Schedule apply.”

    (5) In that table, in the entry for section 23(1), for the words in the second column substitute “Person supervising a person under 18 and allowing him to make improper use of air weapon”.
    (6) In Part 2 of that Schedule (supplementary)—
    (a) in paragraph 7, after “under section” insert “21A,”;
    (b) in paragraph 8, after “under section” insert “21A,”.
    Ammunition

    35 Restriction on sale and purchase of primers (1) This section applies to a cap-type primer designed for use in metallic ammunition for a firearm.
    (2) It is an offence for a person to sell to another either—
    (a) a primer to which this section applies,
    (b) an empty cartridge case incorporating such a primer,
    unless that other person falls within subsection (3).
    (3) A person falls within this subsection if—
    (a) he is a registered firearms dealer;
    (b) he sells by way of any trade or business either primers or empty cartridge cases incorporating primers, or both;
    (c) he produces a certificate authorising him to possess a firearm of a relevant kind;
    (d) he produces a certificate authorising him to possess ammunition of a relevant kind;
    (e) he shows that he is a person in the service of Her Majesty who is entitled under subsection (6) to acquire a primer to which this section applies;
    (f) he shows that he is entitled, by virtue of the 1968 Act, the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1988 (c. 45) or any other enactment and otherwise than by virtue of being a person in the service of Her Majesty, to have possession, without a certificate, of a firearm of a relevant kind or of ammunition of a relevant kind;
    (g) he produces a certificate authorising another person to have possession of such a firearm, or of such ammunition, together with that other person’s authority to purchase the primer or empty cartridge case on his behalf; or
    (h) he shows that he is authorised by regulations made by the Secretary of State to purchase primers or cartridge cases of the type in question.
    (4) It is an offence for a person to buy or to attempt to buy—
    (a) a primer to which this section applies, or
    (b) an empty cartridge case incorporating such a primer,
    unless he falls within subsection (5).
    (5) A person falls within this subsection if—
    (a) he is a registered firearms dealer;
    (b) he sells by way of any trade or business either primers or empty cartridge cases incorporating primers, or both;
    (c) he holds a certificate authorising him to possess a firearm of a relevant kind;
    (d) he holds a certificate authorising him to possess ammunition of a relevant kind;
    (e) he is a person in the service of Her Majesty who is entitled under subsection (6) to acquire a primer to which this section applies;
    (f) he is entitled, by virtue of the 1968 Act, the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1988 or any other enactment and otherwise than by virtue of being a person in the service of Her Majesty, to have possession, without a certificate, of a firearm of a relevant kind or of ammunition of a relevant kind;
    (g) he is in possession of a certificate authorising another person to have possession of such a firearm, or of such ammunition, and has that other person’s authority to purchase the primer or empty cartridge case on his behalf; or
    (h) he is authorised by regulations made by the Secretary of State to purchase primers or cartridge cases of the type in question.
    (6) A person who is in the service of Her Majesty is entitled to acquire a primer to which this section applies if—
    (a) he is duly authorised in writing to acquire firearms and ammunition for the public service; or
    (b) he is a person who is authorised to purchase a firearm or ammunition by virtue of a certificate issued in accordance with section 54(2)(b) of the 1968 Act (certificates for persons in naval, military or air service of Her Majesty).
    (7) An offence under this section shall be punishable, on summary conviction—
    (a) in England and Wales, with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks or with a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or with both; and
    (b) in Scotland, with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or with a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or with both.
    (8) In relation to an offence committed before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (c. 44), the reference in subsection (7)(a) of this section to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.
    (9) The power of the Secretary of State to make regulations for the purposes of subsection (3)(h) or (5)(h) shall be exercisable by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
    (10) That power includes power—
    (a) to make different provision for different cases;
    (b) to make provision subject to such exemptions and exceptions as the Secretary of State thinks fit; and
    (c) to make such incidental, supplemental, consequential and transitional provision as he thinks fit.
    (11) In this section—
    “ammunition of a relevant kind” means ammunition for a firearm of a relevant kind;
    “enactment” includes an enactment passed after the passing of this Act;
    “firearm of a relevant kind” means a firearm other than a shot gun, an air weapon or a firearm chambered for rim-fire ammunition.
    Imitation firearms
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    Default Re: VCR ACT 2006 (Firearms FULL)

    36 Manufacture, import and sale of realistic imitation firearms (1) A person is guilty of an offence if—
    (a) he manufactures a realistic imitation firearm;
    (b) he modifies an imitation firearm so that it becomes a realistic imitation firearm;
    (c) he sells a realistic imitation firearm; or
    (d) he brings a realistic imitation firearm into Great Britain or causes one to be brought into Great Britain.
    (2) Subsection (1) has effect subject to the defences in section 37.
    (3) The Secretary of State may by regulations—
    (a) provide for exceptions and exemptions from the offence under subsection (1); and
    (b) provide for it to be a defence in proceedings for such an offence to show the matters specified or described in the regulations.
    (4) Regulations under subsection (3) may—
    (a) frame any exception, exemption or defence by reference to an approval or consent given in accordance with the regulations;
    (b) provide for approvals and consents to be given in relation to particular cases or in relation to such descriptions of case as may be specified or described in the regulations; and
    (c) confer the function of giving approvals or consents on such persons specified or described in the regulations as the Secretary of State thinks fit.
    (5) The power of the Secretary of State to make regulations under subsection (3) shall be exercisable by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
    (6) That power includes power—
    (a) to make different provision for different cases;
    (b) to make provision subject to such exemptions and exceptions as the Secretary of State thinks fit; and
    (c) to make such incidental, supplemental, consequential and transitional provision as he thinks fit.
    (7) A realistic imitation firearm brought into Great Britain shall be liable to forfeiture under the customs and excise Acts.
    (8) In subsection (7) “the customs and excise Acts” has the meaning given by section 1 of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 (c. 2).
    (9) An offence under this section shall be punishable, on summary conviction—
    (a) in England and Wales, with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks or with a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or with both; and
    (b) in Scotland, with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or with a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or with both.
    (10) In relation to an offence committed before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (c. 44), the reference in subsection (9)(a) of this section to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.
    (11) In this section “realistic imitation firearm” has the meaning given by section 38.
    37 Specific defences applying to the offence under s. 36 (1) It shall be a defence for a person charged with an offence under section 36 in respect of any conduct to show that the conduct was for the purpose only of making the imitation firearm in question available for one or more of the purposes specified in subsection (2).
    (2) Those purposes are—
    (a) the purposes of a museum or gallery;
    (b) the purposes of theatrical performances and of rehearsals for such performances;
    (c) the production of films (within the meaning of Part 1 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (c. 48)_see section 5B of that Act);
    (d) the production of television programmes (within the meaning of the Communications Act 2003 (c. 21)_see section 405(1) of that Act);
    (e) the organisation and holding of historical re-enactments organised and held by persons specified or described for the purposes of this section by regulations made by the Secretary of State;
    (f) the purposes of functions that a person has in his capacity as a person in the service of Her Majesty.
    (3) It shall also be a defence for a person charged with an offence under section 36 in respect of conduct falling within subsection (1)(d) of that section to show that the conduct—
    (a) was in the course of carrying on any trade or business; and
    (b) was for the purpose of making the imitation firearm in question available to be modified in a way which would result in its ceasing to be a realistic imitation firearm.
    (4) For the purposes of this section a person shall be taken to have shown a matter specified in subsection (1) or (3) if—
    (a) sufficient evidence of that matter is adduced to raise an issue with respect to it; and
    (b) the contrary is not proved beyond a reasonable doubt.
    (5) The power of the Secretary of State to make regulations under this section shall be exercisable by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
    (6) That power includes power—
    (a) to make different provision for different cases;
    (b) to make provision subject to such exemptions and exceptions as the Secretary of State thinks fit; and
    (c) to make such incidental, supplemental, consequential and transitional provision as he thinks fit.
    (7) In this section—
    “historical re-enactment” means any presentation or other event held for the purpose of re-enacting an event from the past or of illustrating conduct from a particular time or period in the past;
    “museum or gallery” includes any institution which—
    (a)has as its purpose, or one of its purposes, the preservation, display and interpretation of material of historical, artistic or scientific interest; and
    (b)gives the public access to it.
    38 Meaning of “realistic imitation firearm” (1) In sections 36 and 37 “realistic imitation firearm” means an imitation firearm which—
    (a) has an appearance that is so realistic as to make it indistinguishable, for all practical purposes, from a real firearm; and
    (b) is neither a de-activated firearm nor itself an antique.
    (2) For the purposes of this section, an imitation firearm is not (except by virtue of subsection (3)(b)) to be regarded as distinguishable from a real firearm for any practical purpose if it could be so distinguished only—
    (a) by an expert;
    (b) on a close examination; or
    (c) as a result of an attempt to load or to fire it.
    (3) In determining for the purposes of this section whether an imitation firearm is distinguishable from a real firearm—
    (a) the matters that must be taken into account include any differences between the size, shape and principal colour of the imitation firearm and the size, shape and colour in which the real firearm is manufactured; and
    (b) the imitation is to be regarded as distinguishable if its size, shape or principal colour is unrealistic for a real firearm.
    (4) The Secretary of State may by regulations provide that, for the purposes of subsection (3)(b)—
    (a) the size of an imitation firearm is to be regarded as unrealistic for a real firearm only if the imitation firearm has dimensions that are less than the dimensions specified in the regulations; and
    (b) a colour is to be regarded as unrealistic for a real firearm only if it is a colour specified in the regulations.
    (5) The power of the Secretary of State to make regulations under this section shall be exercisable by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
    (6) That power includes power—
    (a) to make different provision for different cases;
    (b) to make provision subject to such exemptions and exceptions as the Secretary of State thinks fit; and
    (c) to make such incidental, supplemental, consequential and transitional provision as he thinks fit.
    (7) In this section—
    “colour” is to be construed in accordance with subsection (9);
    “de-activated firearm” means an imitation firearm that consists in something which—
    (a)was a firearm; but
    (b)has been so rendered incapable of discharging a shot, bullet or other missile as no longer to be a firearm;
    “real firearm” means—
    (a)a firearm of an actual make or model of modern firearm (whether existing or discontinued); or
    (b)something falling within a description which could be used for identifying, by reference to their appearance, the firearms falling within a category of actual modern firearms which, even though they include firearms of different makes or models (whether existing or discontinued) or both, all have the same or a similar appearance.
    (8) In subsection (7) “modern firearm” means any firearm other than one the appearance of which would tend to identify it as having a design and mechanism of a sort first dating from before the year 1870.
    (9) References in this section, in relation to an imitation firearm or a real firearm, to its colour include references to its being made of transparent material.
    (10) Section 8 of the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1988 (c. 45) (under which firearms are deemed to be deactivated if they are appropriately marked) applies for the purposes of this section as it applies for the purposes of the 1968 Act.
    39 Specification for imitation firearms (1) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision requiring imitation firearms to conform to specifications which are—
    (a) set out in the regulations; or
    (b) approved by such persons and in such manner as may be so set out.
    (2) A person is guilty of an offence if—
    (a) he manufactures an imitation firearm which does not conform to the specifications required of it by regulations under this section;
    (b) he modifies an imitation firearm so that it ceases to conform to the specifications so required of it;
    (c) he modifies a firearm to create an imitation firearm that does not conform to the specifications so required of it; or
    (d) he brings an imitation firearm which does not conform to the specifications so required of it into Great Britain or causes such an imitation firearm to be brought into Great Britain.
    (3) An offence under this section shall be punishable, on summary conviction—
    (a) in England and Wales, with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks or with a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or with both; and
    (b) in Scotland, with imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or with a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or with both.
    (4) In relation to an offence committed before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (c. 44), the reference in subsection (3)(a) of this section to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.
    (5) Regulations under this section may provide that, in proceedings for an offence under this section, it is to be presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that an imitation firearm conforms to the required specification if it, or the description of imitation firearms to which it belongs, has been certified as so conforming by a person who is—
    (a) specified in the regulations; or
    (b) determined for the purpose in accordance with provisions contained in the regulations.
    (6) An imitation firearm brought into Great Britain which does not conform to the specifications required of it by regulations under this section shall be liable to forfeiture under the customs and excise Acts.
    (7) In subsection (6) “the customs and excise Acts” has the meaning given by section 1 of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 (c. 2).
    (8) The power of the Secretary of State to make regulations under this section shall be exercisable by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
    (9) That power includes power—
    (a) to make different provision for different cases;
    (b) to make provision subject to such exemptions and exceptions as the Secretary of State thinks fit; and
    (c) to make such incidental, supplemental, consequential and transitional provision as he thinks fit.
    40 Supplying imitation firearms to minors (1) After section 24 of the 1968 Act insert—
    “24A Supplying imitation firearms to minors (1) It is an offence for a person under the age of eighteen to purchase an imitation firearm.
    (2) It is an offence to sell an imitation firearm to a person under the age of eighteen.
    (3) In proceedings for an offence under subsection (2) it is a defence to show that the person charged with the offence—
    (a) believed the other person to be aged eighteen or over; and
    (b) had reasonable ground for that belief.
    (4) For the purposes of this section a person shall be taken to have shown the matters specified in subsection (3) if—
    (a) sufficient evidence of those matters is adduced to raise an issue with respect to them; and
    (b) the contrary is not proved beyond a reasonable doubt.”
    (2) In the table in Part 1 of Schedule 6 (punishment), after the entry for section 24(4) insert—
    “Section 24A(1) or (2) Acquisition by a minor of an imitation firearm and supplying him. Summary In England and Wales, 51 weeks or a fine of level 5 on the standard scale, or both. In Scotland, 6 months, or a fine of level 5 on the standard scale, or both. —”

    (3) In relation to an offence committed in England and Wales before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (c. 44), the reference to 51 weeks in the entry inserted by subsection (2) of this section is to be read as a reference to 6 months.
    41 Increase of maximum sentence for possessing an imitation firearm (1) In the entry in Schedule 6 to the 1968 Act relating to section 19 of that Act (mode of trial and punishment of possession of firearm or imitation firearm in a public place)—
    (a) in paragraph (b) of column 3 (offence to be triable either way except in the case of an imitation firearm or air weapon), omit the words “in the case of an imitation firearm or”; and
    (b) in column 4, for “7 years or a fine; or both” substitute—
    “(i) if the weapon is an imitation firearm, 12 months or a fine, or both;
    (ii) in any other case, 7 years or a fine, or both.”
    (2) An offence in England and Wales under section 19 of the 1968 Act in respect of an imitation firearm which is triable either way by virtue of this section is to be treated—
    (a) as an offence to which section 282(3) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (c. 44) (increase of maximum sentence on conviction of an either way offence) applies; and
    (b) as not being an offence to which section 281(5) of that Act (increase of maximum sentence on conviction of a summary only offence) applies.
    (3) This section—
    (a) applies only to offences committed after the commencement of this section; and
    (b) so far as it relates to subsection (3) of section 282 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 or subsection (5) of section 281 of that Act, does not have effect in relation to offences committed before the commencement of that subsection
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    Default The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Realistic Imitation Firearms) Regulations

    For Info only.. topic locked, Coming into force 1st October 2007

    Statutory Instrument 2007 No. 2606
    The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Realistic Imitation Firearms) Regulations 2007
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    2007 No. 2606


    ARMS AND AMMUNITION


    The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Realistic Imitation Firearms) Regulations 2007

    Made 6th September 2007
    Laid before Parliament 7th September 2007
    Coming into force 1st October 2007

    The Secretary of State makes the following Regulations in exercise of the powers conferred by sections 36, 37 and 38 of and paragraphs 4, 5 and 6 of Schedule 2 to the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006[1].

    Citation and commencement
    1. These Regulations may be cited as the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Realistic Imitation Firearms) Regulations 2007 and shall come into force on 1st October 2007.

    Interpretation
    2. In these regulations—


    the "2006 Act" means the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006;

    "permitted event" means a commercial event at which firearms or realistic imitation firearms (or both) are offered for sale or displayed;

    "insurance" means a contract of insurance or other arrangement made for the purpose of indemnifying a person or persons named in the contract or under the arrangement;

    "permitted activities" means the acting out of military or law enforcement scenarios for the purposes of recreation; and

    "third parties" includes participants in, and spectators of, permitted activities and historical re-enactments (as the case may be) and members of the public.
    Defences to an offence under section 36 of the 2006 Act or under paragraph 4 of Schedule 2 to that Act
    3. —(1) It shall be a defence in proceedings for an offence under section 36 of the 2006 Act or under paragraph 4 of Schedule 2 to that Act for the person charged with the offence to show that his conduct was for the purpose only of making the imitation firearm in question available for one or more of the purposes specified in paragraph (2).

    (2) Those purposes are—



    (a) the organisation and holding of permitted activities for which public liability insurance is held in relation to liabilities to third parties arising from or in connection with the organisation and holding of those activities;

    (b) the purposes of display at a permitted event.


    4. For the purposes of regulation 3 a person shall be taken to have shown a matter specified in that regulation if—



    (a) sufficient evidence of that matter is adduced to raise an issue with respect to it; and

    (b) the contrary is not proved beyond a reasonable doubt.


    5. —(1) The persons described for the purposes of section 37(2)(e) of the 2006 Act and paragraph 5(2)(e) of Schedule 2 to that Act are those mentioned in paragraph (2).

    (2) The persons mentioned in this paragraph are—



    (a) a person or persons holding public liability insurance in relation to liabilities to third parties arising from or in connection with the organisation and holding of historical re-enactments;

    (b) two or more persons, at least one of whom holds such public liability insurance.


    Sizes and colours which are to be regarded as unrealistic for a real firearm
    6. —(1) For the purposes of section 38(3)(b) of the 2006 Act and paragraph 6(3)(b) of Schedule 2 to that Act, the size of an imitation firearm is to be regarded as unrealistic for a real firearm only if the imitation firearm has dimensions that are less than the dimensions specified in paragraph (2).

    (2) The dimensions specified in this paragraph are a height of 38 millimetres and a length of 70 millimetres.

    7. —(1) For the purposes of section 38(3)(b) of the 2006 Act and paragraph 6(3)(b) of Schedule 2 to that Act, a colour is to be regarded as unrealistic for a real firearm only if it is a colour specified in paragraph (2) or if the imitation firearm is made of transparent material.

    (2) The colours specified in this paragraph are—



    (a) bright red;

    (b) bright orange;

    (c) bright yellow;

    (d) bright green;

    (e) bright pink;

    (f) bright purple; and

    (g) bright blue.



    Tony McNulty
    Minister of State

    Home Office
    6th September 2007





    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    EXPLANATORY NOTE

    (This note is not part of the Regulations)


    These Regulations make provision in connection with the realistic imitation firearms provisions of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (sections 36 to 38 and paragraphs 4 to 6 of Schedule 2).

    Regulation 3 provides for defences to the offences of the manufacture, import and sale of realistic imitation firearms in section 36 and paragraph 4 of Schedule 2. These defences will operate where a person who is charged with such an offence can show that his conduct was for the purpose only of making the imitation firearm in question available for one or more of the purposes specified in regulation 3(2). Regulation 4 makes provision dealing with the burden of proof for these defences.

    Regulation 5 describes persons who organise and hold historical re-enactments for the purpose of the defence to offences under section 36 and paragraph 4 of Schedule 2 as set out in section 37(2)(e) and paragraph 5(2)(e) of Schedule 2.

    Regulations 6 and 7 make provision in connection with the definition of "realistic imitation firearm" in section 38 and paragraph 6 of Schedule 2. These regulations specify the sizes and colours which are to be regarded as unrealistic for a real firearm.
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    Default Re: VCR Act 2006 Guidance

    The Secretary of State makes the following Regulations in exercise of the powers conferred by sections 36, 37 and 38 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006(1).

    Citation, commencement and extent

    — These Regulations may be cited as the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Realistic Imitation Firearms) Regulations 2007 and shall come into force on 2007.

    These Regulations extend to Great Britain.

    Interpretation

    In these regulations—

    the “2006 Act” means the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006;

    “permitted event” means a commercial event at which firearms or realistic imitation firearms (or both) are offered for sale or displayed;

    “insurance” means a contract of insurance or other arrangement made for the purpose of indemnifying the person or persons who hold it; and

    “permitted activities” means the acting out of military or law enforcement scenarios for the purposes of recreation.

    Defences to an offence under section 36 of the 2006 Act

    — It shall be a defence in proceedings for an offence under section 36 of the 2006 Act for the person charged with the offence to show that his conduct was for the purpose only of making the imitation firearm in question available for one or more of the purposes specified in paragraph (2).

    Those purposes are—

    the organisation and holding of permitted activities for which public liability insurance is held in relation to liabilities to third parties arising from or in connection with the organisation and holding of those activities;

    the purposes of display at a permitted event.

    — The persons described for the purposes of section 37(2)(e) of the 2006 Act are those mentioned in paragraph (2).

    The persons mentioned in this paragraph are—

    a person or persons holding public liability insurance in relation to liabilities to third parties arising from or in connection with the organisation and holding of historical re-enactments;

    two or more persons, at least one of whom holds such public liability insurance.
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