Skip to main content

Armed Forces: Weapons

Volume 465: debated on Thursday 25 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what weapons and ammunition for which (a) his Department and (b) the armed forces have responsibility have gone missing in the last two years. (155734)

In answering this question the term ‘weapons’ is taken to be firearms and ‘missing’ is taken to include lost and stolen. Separate records are not maintained for other weapons and such information could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

The number of firearms lost or stolen in the period 1 January 2005 until 1 October 2007 is 64. The breakdown is as follows:

Stolen

Recovered

Automatic weapon

2005

1

0

2006

0

0

2007

0

0

Total

1

0

Heavy arms (mortar etc.)

2005

0

0

2006

1

1

2007

0

0

Total

1

1

Other weapon

2005

13

0

2006

1

1

2007

1

1

Total

15

2

Pistol

2005

5

2

2006

8

2

2007

5

1

Total

18

5

Rifle (mil)

2005

9

2

2006

12

0

2007

4

1

Total

25

3

Shotgun

2005

0

0

2006

0

0

2007

2

0

Total

2

0

Rifle

2005

0

0

2006

2

0

2007

0

0

Total

2

0

Grand total

64

11

Thefts of weapons are investigated by the Service Police, Ministry of Defence Police or the Home Department Police, either jointly or independently.

The MOD holds numerous types of ammunition. Although the loss and theft is recorded, the information is not held in the format requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.