SOME 80 per cent of recent robberies have been committed with the use of seven .32 pistols stolen from licensed firearm holders, acting Police Commissioner David Ramnarine disclosed on Friday.According to the top cop, some licensed holders have exhibited poor levels of responsibility. “You’re approved a personal firearm licence for your personal safety and protection; but in some instances you don’t have to be a professor or someone with a master’s degree to understand that this is a serious matter in terms of the care and level of responsibility exercised — which has resulted in the theft of these firearms,” Ramnarine declared.
Between July and September 2016, nine licensed firearms have been stolen; seven of these were .32 pistols, one was a shotgun and the other was a 9mm pistol.
“The irresponsible behaviour of persons who are expected to display a very high degree or level of personal discipline, particularly to have permission to own and use a firearm, contributes not only to the challenges police offices face, but contributes to the general endangerment of the society; since the stolen firearms are now in the hands of criminal elements,” the acting top cop said.
Ramnarine noted that on one occasion, at 21:00hrs a father was resting upstairs, his daughter was watching television and their door was wide open. The home was invaded by bandits, and in the process the father’s firearm was taken by the robbers.
On another occasion, he said, a businesswoman on the East Coast who was a licensed firearm holder was away from the business and left the firearm in a wardrobe at home. There was a robbery and the firearm was stolen.
The acting Commissioner said firearm holders should understand the seriousness of being granted permission to carry a weapon.