Nanaimo Mounties and museum gathering guns

NANAIMO – Firearms by the dozens being handed over to RCMP during gun amnesty. Vancouver Island Military Museum also taking donated weapons.

Police in Nanaimo are gathering up dozens of firearms from around the city under the current B.C. gun amnesty.

Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman, said many of the firearms are being turned in by widows or family members who have inherited weapons they don’t want.

Throughout the month of June penalties for possessing weapons without proper licensing is suspended so people can turn in weapons without fear of running afoul of the law.

There is no amnesty being offered for possession of weapons that have been used to commit a crime.

Anyone who wants to dispose of firearms can call Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 and police will come to homes to collect the weapons. People must not try to dispose of firearms or ammunition by bringing them into any RCMP detachment.

“Since June 1 we’ve had nine separate seizures,” O’Brien said.

As of Tuesday Nanaimo Mounties have collected 28 rifles, eight handguns and nearly 1,000 rounds of ammunition. All of the weapons were functional. Serial numbers of handguns were checked, but none turned up as stolen or related to criminal activity.

The majority of the gathered weapons will be destroyed.

To learn more about the B.C. gun amnesty, please visit the program website at www.bcgunamnesty.ca.

The learn more about laws and regulations regarding possession and use of firearms of all types in Canada, please visit the Canadian Firearms Program at www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/cfp-pcaf.

Vancouver Island Military Museum is also collecting historic weapons. People who have historic firearms they no longer want, but wish to see them preserved can donate them to the museum, which provides tax receipts for the value of donated weapons.

Since transporting weapons without a possession and acquisition license is illegal, do not bring weapons to the museum. To donate weapons, please call Vancouver Island Museum staff at 250-753-3814 and they will arrange to have the firearms collected.