Posted on Monday 9 May 2022
Durham Constabulary are urging people to hand over unwanted guns and ammunition as part of a national firearms surrender this month.
From Thursday, May 12, until Sunday, May 29, residents of County Durham and Darlington can surrender any unwanted or unlawfully held guns and ammunition at selected police stations across the county, and will not face prosecution at the point of surrender.
The surrender is part of the national ‘Operation Aztec’, coordinated by the National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NABIS) and aims to prevent weapons and ammunition from getting into the wrong hands.
Inspector Terry France, of the Force’s Firearms Licensing Unit, said: “We are fortunate that gun crime remains low in Durham, but will always take the opportunity to take potentially harmful weapons out of circulation.
“We are working with partners and our local communities to safeguard, educate and intervene at the earliest opportunity, and this surrender allows us to take any guns that people should not have - or do not want - off the street.”
Officers recognise that many firearms can be held innocently, and in some cases can be overlooked or forgotten about, while others are acquired and distributed by criminal networks specifically to threaten or harm local communities.
Inspector France said: “You may have a gun that has been handed down through the family, or found a firearm in your loft or shed which has been gathering dust for many years.
“This is your opportunity to safely get rid of it, and prevent it from falling into the hands of those who may use it for criminal purposes.”
Weapons can be surrendered at all of County Durham and Darlington’s police stations. Check the station opening times in advance on the force website.
Items cannot be handed in at our Aykley Heads headquarters.
Anyone seeking advice on how best to transport the weapon or ammunition to their nearest police station should ring the force on 101.