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Northumbria Police takes part in two-week firearms surrender urging public to hand in firearms and ammunition

Northumbria Police is taking part in a national two-week firearm surrender aimed at encouraging people to hand in firearms and ammunition at their local police station.

Thursday, 12th May 2022, 12:01 am
Updated Thursday, 12th May 2022, 12:33 pm

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Known as Operation Aztec, the two-week surrender is taking place across England, Scotland and Wales and means, during the period, those surrendering firearms will not face prosecution for the illegal possession at the point of surrender and can remain anonymous.

The operation began on Thursday, May 12, and will run until Sunday, May 29.

Once handed in, weapons will be forensically examined and then either destroyed or given to museums and exhibitions.

Police are urging the public to hand in any firearms or ammunition as part of the surrender

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Superintendent David Pickett, from Northumbria Police, is leading on the surrender and said protecting communities is the key priority.

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He said: “While incidents involving firearms are rare in our area, we recognise the impact these types of offences can have on our communities and when they do occur we are committed to using every tactic at our disposal to bring offenders to justice.

“Where we can we want to prevent offences from occurring in the first place, and this national initiative can help achieve that – by giving people the chance to dispose of firearms in a safe way.

“One firearm handed in is one less that could potentially be used to harm or threaten our communities.

“If you have a firearm, now is your chance to dispose of it safely, or if you know of one being kept illegally please tell us so we can take action – you could help save a life.”

Weapons can be handed into the following stations:

*Southwick Police Station, Church Bank, Sunderland

*Newcastle City Centre Police Station, Forth Banks

*Northumbria Police HQ, Middle Engine Lane, Wallsend

Superintendent Pickett added: “This firearms surrender is very much an extension of the work which goes on throughout the year to protect the communities we are privileged to serve.

“Our work alongside partners to safeguard and educate the public and disrupt serious and organised criminality is ongoing.

“Together we can all help ensure that the North East remains one of the safest places in the country to live, work and visit.”