Parliament’s only pig hunter rejects majority of Arms Act proposals

Parliament’s only pig hunter seems to understand what a pack of idiots the police were with their activism over gun laws.

Police Minister Paula Bennett has today responded to the Law and Order Select Committee report on issues relating to the illegal possession of firearms.

The Select Committee’s terms of reference were to focus on how widespread firearms possession is amongst criminals – including gangs, how those people who don’t have a firearms licence come into possession of firearms and what changes, if any, would restrict the flow of firearms to criminals, gangs and people who don’t hold a licence.

“The committee made 20 recommendations. After careful consideration I’ve accepted seven, rejected 12, and recommended one proceed with changes,” Mrs Bennett says.

“We needed to strike the right balance between public safety and the rights of legal firearms owners. Although the report was well intended, I believe many of the recommendations would not decrease the flow of firearms to criminals and gangs but would unduly impact on legally licenced firearms users.

“I appointed two independent firearms experts to advise me. I’ve listened to their advice, advice from Police, read the recommendations from the select committee and I’ve taken on board feedback from the public.

Inspector Chris Scahill

“After careful consideration I have added two more recommendations to my response. One proposes the introduction of the power to suspend licences pending decision on revocation. This will give Police an alternative to cancelling a licence, for example in situations where someone has been charged with family violence, or where there are security issues that need to be resolved.

“I’m also proposing a Ministerial direction to the Police to require consultation with the firearms community when considering changes to the Arms Act and the interpretation of it.

“Nobody wants firearms getting into the hands of violent gang members but we also don’t want over the top rules and restrictions to be placed on hunters and shooters who manage their firearms responsibly.”

“My response to the report has been tabled in Parliament. We will now begin a policy process around the recommendations we are progressing which will involve consultation, looking at costs and any regulatory impacts before coming back to Cabinet for approval later this year,” Mrs Bennett says.

The only issue I have is she didn’t tell the police union to fuck off.

My understanding is two senior Police in PNHQ are getting the short shrift. Inspector Chris Scahill in charge of arms control and Inspector Alistair Williams are both understood to be the Police scapegoats for their out of control and draconian behaviour towards legal, licensed gun owners. All regional commanders have been mad with PNHQ since the pistol club ban as a result of their actions. They have been trying to “lock in” training at club ranges. Distrust between the Minister and Police was shown when police argued against Nicole McKee getting access to the minister. Paula Bennett knew then that she had the right person for her review.

Here is the summary from Paula Bennett’s office,

Recommendation Number

Summarised Recommendation

Government Response Summarised

Sale and supply of firearms and ammunition


A firearms licence required to possess ammunition Reject


A dealer’s licence required to sell ammunition Reject


Dealers required to keep records of ammunition sales Reject


Registration process for websites facilitating trading in firearms, parts, or ammunition Amend recommendation – Do not introduce registration  but clarify ‘mail order’ process applies to online sales in Arms Amendment Bill


Permit to procure extended to cover all sales or transfers of firearms (i.e. include A category firearms) Reject – but improve efficiency in current licensing and permitting processes. Mail order applies to online sales
Definition of military-style semi-automatics


Investigate the creation of a category of restricted semi-automatic rifle and shotgun Reject
Effectiveness of licensing, training, and registering firearms


Implement firearm prohibition orders Accept – include in the Arms (Firearm Prohibition Orders and Firearms Licences) Amendment Bill


Codify the ‘fit and proper’ criteria in the Arms Act Reject


Implement a stand-down period after licence revocation Accept – include a 12 month stand down period in the Arms (Firearm Prohibition Orders and Firearms Licences) Amendment Bill


Clarify that gang members or prospects must not be considered ‘fit and proper’ to possess firearms Accept – include in the Arms (Firearm Prohibition Orders and Firearms Licences) Amendment Bill


Require Police to record serial numbers of all firearms upon renewal of licence or inspection of premises Reject – voluntary process to continue
Criminal offending with firearms


Review the penalties in the Arms Act Accept – progress in Arms Amendment Bill


Treat dealer offending as aggravated at sentencing Reject


Determine appropriate security standards for A category licences Accept – Police/firearms community advisory forum  already commenced this process


Secure storage confirmed before licence or endorsement received Reject


Allow Police to enter premises to inspect security of A category firearms Reject


Failure to comply with storage regulations to result in mandatory revocation Reject – but note new suspension of licence


Reducing the number of grey firearms


Clarify and publicise the extent of amnesty provisions in the Arms Act 1983 Accept – to progress in Arms Amendment Bill


Police publicise amnesty provisions Reject


Check that firearms brought in on visitors permit are exported or transferred legally Accept (administrative)
Additional Government Recommendations


Provide the power to suspend licences Include in the Arms (Firearm Prohibition Orders and Firearms Licences) Amendment Bill


Police to improve its consultative processes with the firearms community Propose to give a Ministerial Directive to this end

Watch out for recommendation 11…there is NO voluntary process so DO NOT under any circumstances “comply” with this supposed voluntary process. Tell the Arms Officer to get stuffed if asked for serial numbers, it isn’t legal, nor required.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.