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Firearms Act 1968

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Version Superseded: 20/01/2004

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1 Requirement of firearm certificate.E+W+S

(1)Subject to any exemption under this Act, it is an offence for a person—

(a)to have in his possession, or to purchase or acquire, a firearm to which this section applies without holding a firearm certificate in force at the time, or otherwise than as authorised by such a certificate;

(b)to have in his possession, or to purchase or acquire, any ammunition to which this section applies without holding a firearm certificate in force at the time, or otherwise than as authorised by such a certificate, or in quantities in excess of those so authorised.

(2)It is an offence for a person to fail to comply with a condition subject to which a firearm certificate is held by him.

(3)This section applies to every firearm except—

[F1(a)a shot gun within the meaning of this Act, that is to say a smooth-bore gun (not being an air gun) which—

(i)has a barrel not less than 24 inches in length and does not have any barrel with a bore exceeding 2 inches in diameter;

(ii)either has no magazine or has a non-detachable magazine incapable of holding more than two cartridges; and

(iii)is not a revolver gun; and]

(b)an air weapon (that is to say, an air rifle, air gun or air pistol not of a type declared by rules made by the Secretary of State under section 53 of this Act to be specially dangerous).

[F2(3A)A gun which has been adapted to have such a magazine as is mentioned in subsection (3)(a)(ii) above shall not be regarded as falling within that provision unless the magazine bears a mark approved by the Secretary of State for denoting that fact and that mark has been made, and the adaptation has been certified in writing as having been carried out in a manner approved by him, either by one of the two companies mentioned in section 58(1) of this Act or by such other person as may be approved by him for that purpose.]

(4)This section applies to any ammunition for a firearm, except the following articles, namely:—

(a)cartridges containing five or more shot, none of which exceeds ·36 inch in diameter;

(b)ammunition for an air gun, air rifle or air pistol; and

(c)blank cartridges not more than one inch in diameter measured immediately in front of the rim or cannelure of the base of the cartridge.

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