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Statistical Bulletin: Crime and Justice Series: Firearm Certificates Statistics, Scotland, 2008

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2. Main Points

  • There were 26,416 firearm certificates on issue at the end of 2008, an increase of 1 per cent on the previous year, but 13 per cent lower than the number in 1999 ( Table 1).
  • The 26,416 firearm certificates on issue at the end of 2008 covered the possession of 69,481 firearms, a 4 per cent increase compared to 2007. The number of firearms held on certificate has been rising in recent years and the number held in 2008 was the highest in the 10 years covered by this bulletin ( Table 1).
  • In 2008, there were 1,043 applications for new firearms certificates, of which 1,030 (99 per cent) were granted. There were 1,699 applications for renewal, of which all but 1 were granted ( Table 2).
  • There were 653 cancellations of firearm certificates and 31 firearm certificates were revoked ( Table 2).
  • The majority (82 per cent) of certified firearms where the type of weapon was known were rifles ( Table 3).
  • There were 50,022 shot gun certificates on issue at the end of 2008, an increase of 2 per cent from 2007, but 20 per cent lower than at the end of 1999 ( Table 4).
  • The 50,022 shot gun certificates on issue at the end of 2008 covered the possession of 137,881 shot guns, an increase of 3 per cent compared to 2007 and the highest number in the 10 years covered by this bulletin. In 2008, the average number of shot guns possessed for each certificate was 2.8 ( Table 4).
  • The number of applications for a new shot gun certificate was 1,749 in 2008, 8 per cent lower than in 2007. Ninety eight per cent (1,716) of these applications were granted. There were 2,968 applications for renewal of shot gun certificates, 2,964 of which were granted ( Table 5).
  • In 2008, there were 907 cancellations of shot gun certificates and 64 revocations of shot gun certificates ( Table 5).
  • The numbers of both firearm and shot gun certificates on issue, per head of population, were highest in the Northern police force area and lowest in Strathclyde ( Tables 2 & 5).
  • There were 327 registered firearms dealers in Scotland at the end of 2008, an increase of 9 per cent from the 301 registered dealers at the end of 2007 ( Table 7).