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Firearms

Volume 449: debated on Wednesday 19 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) seizures and (b) disposals of firearms there were in each police authority area in England and Wales in each of the last three years for which records are available. (85313)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on how many operations firearms were issued to police officers in England and Wales in each year since 1983; in how many of these operations shots were fired by police officers; and how many police officers were qualified to carry firearms in each of the last nine years. (85355)

The number of operations in which firearms were authorised since 1983, the number of incidents when shots were fired using conventional firearms, and the number of Authorised Firearms Officers in police forces in England and Wales since 1996-97 are shown in the following tables. Statistics for 2005-06 are likely to be announced in October.

Number of operations in which firearms were authorised

Number of operations

1983

3,180

1984

2,667

1985

2,488

1986

2,453

1987

2,185

1988

2,227

1989

2,583

1990

2,874

1991

3,722

1992

4,479

1993

5,625

1994-95

6,141

1995-96

8,726

1996-97

12,379

1997-98

11,842

1998-99

10,928

1999-2000

10,915

2000-01

11,109

2001-02

13,991

2002-03

14,827

2003-04

16,657

2004-05

15,981

Note:

Figures for operations in which firearms were issued to officers are not available for the first three months of 1994

Number of incidents where conventional firearms were used

Incidents

1996-97

5

1997-98

3

1998-99

5

1999-2000

7

2000-01

9

2001-02

11

2002-03

10

2003-04

4

2004-05

5

Number of authorised firearms officers (AFOs)

Total

1996-97

6,738

1997-98

6,585

1998-99

6,308

1999-2000

6,262

2000-01

6,064

2001-02

5,776

2002-03

5,763

2003-04

6,096

2004-05

6,243