October 2004


At a press conference at the Labour Party Conference in Brighton, a number of members of GCN joined forces with Steve McCabe MP to highlight the sale of guns on the eBay auction site.


eBay's stated policy is not to deal in guns.  Nevertheless, its customers have been invited to bid for empty boxes or gun mountings with which they received the "free gift" of a gun.  Deactivated guns and handbooks needed to reactivate them have been offered for sale.  In spite of eBay's policy guns for auction are also advertised openly.  On one day, for example, 51 weapons were tracked on the site.  Most of these are airguns, but some of the weapons, including a Czech CZ75 pistol priced at 650, are feared to be working firearms whose sale in the UK would be illegal under any circumstances.  Unscrupulous sellers are using the site to get around the gun laws.


Given the increasing levels of crime involving air guns, replica weapons and blank-firing pistols (see our lists of Gun incidents) we are concerned that there is no control over purchases of these guns made through eBay.  They could be obtained by children under the age of 17 who would not be allowed to buy them in shops.


We have urged eBay to police their site more rigorously and ensure that guns are not made available.


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Internet Gun Sales

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