The Minister for Police, Fireand Emergency Services Nicole Manison will introduce legislation intoParliament this week strengthening police powers to fight gun violence andcrime.
If passed, the FirearmAmendment Bill 2019 will see the introduction of Firearm Prohibition Orders(FPOs), increased maximum penalty for a range of firearm offences (includingincreasing the maximum sentence of 2-years imprisonment to 3-years forpossession and sale of a firearm) and an expanded list of disqualifyingoffences.
The introduction of a FPOscheme would prohibit certain people from possessing – or being in the company of someone who is possessing – a firearm and other firearmrelated items (including items such as ammunition,magazines, and firearm barrels) for 10-years.
The Commissioner of Policecould issue an FPO foran individual based on the below criteria:
persons with whomthe individual associates with
confidentialcriminal intelligence about the individual or with whom the individualassociates with
policeinformation that suggests the individual may pose a threat to community if theyacquire a firearm
FPOs have been implementedin Victoria, South Australia, New South Wales and Tasmania and they haveprovided an effective tool for dealing with violent offenders, outlaw motorbikegangs and their associates.
The Commissioner of Policewill not be required to give any reason for issuing an FPO if it was based onconfidential criminal intelligence.
The Firearm Amendment Bill2019 will also strengthen police powers, allowing them to search persons, premises or possessions without a warrant, toensure that an individual subject to an FPO is compliant with their order.
The bill will be referred tothe Social Policy Scrutiny Committee for review.
As noted by Minister forPolice, Fire and Emergency Services Nicole Manison:
Sadly, we have seen thehorrific impact that gun violence can have this legislation will give policemore powers to stop gun violence.
The Territory LaborGovernment is determined to keep our community safe by strengthening firearmlegislation.
We are giving our policestronger powers to keep firearms out of the wrong hands and help prevent crimebefore it happens.
If passed, this legislationwill make it harder for the wrong people to obtain firearms, and will see thosethat do, face harsher penalties.