Amnesty for Bruni Olympic .380 BBM blank firing revolver
Dorset Police is urging anyone in possession of a Bruni Olympic .380 BBM revolver to hand it in before midnight on 4 June 2010.
When originally imported, the Bruni Olympic .380 BBM did not require a licence to own and is commonly known as a ‘blank firer’ being used for the purposes of race starting (starting pistols) or dog training.
The BBM could be purchased through Registered Firearms Dealers and other outlets such as hobbyist stores, agricultural merchants and model shops.
Because of increasing use of these revolvers by criminals, tests were carried out nationally to assess the skills and equipment needed to convert them into live firing weapons.
As a result, this type of revolver has been identified as ‘readily convertible’, which means it can be converted into a lethally barrelled weapon. This brings it within the classification of a prohibited weapon under Section 5 of the Firearms Act 1968.
Anyone found in possession of a Bruni Olympic .380 BBM revolver after 4 June 2010 could be liable to prosecution and upon conviction face a five year mandatory prison sentence.
The period of limited amnesty began on 16 April 2010. It is for the sole purpose of allowing members of the public to hand in Bruni Olympic .380 BBM revolvers in either their converted or unconverted form.
All police stations will receive surrendered weapons during normal opening hours. The aim is to remove as many of these revolvers as possible from circulation so that they do not fall into criminal hands.
By holding this targeted amnesty Dorset Police wants to encourage those members of the public who use this gun legitimately to hand it in before 4 June to avoid later prosecution.
The importation of these revolvers into the UK has now been banned.
Superintendent Charlie Eggar, the Head of Specialist Operations said: “When these blank firing revolvers were first imported into the UK they were not considered lethal or indeed easily convertible into a lethal weapon.
“However since then the accessibility to comparatively sophisticated tools via DIY stores and their relatively low price have given criminals the means to convert these weapons.
“Nationally the number of converted weapons being seized by the police has steadily increased which led to research being conducted that concluded that conversion was now relatively simple.
“As a result, the Bruni Olympic .388 BBM blank firing pistol is now prohibited, anyone in possession of one would face a five year mandatory prison sentence.
“There are likely to be a number of these weapons in the possession of sports clubs, schools, theatrical groups, gun dog training schools and similar organisations in addition to private ownership.
“The national amnesty has been organised to allow previously legally owned weapons to be surrendered to the police before 4 June.
“By removing these potential firearms from circulation Dorset Police, in collaboration with the gun trade and current owners, are contributing significantly to making Dorset safer for everyone.”
Anyone with information relating to gun crime should call Dorset Police on 01202 or 01305 22 22 22 or the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where mobile phone tariffs may apply.