Press Release May 19

Call for Tougher Gun Law

The tragic Napier shooting of police officers and a member of the public by Jan Molenaar has without a doubt been a shock to the nation, as expected this event has  bought calls for tougher gun law.   New Zealand firearms law is recognized as one of the best models by many jurisdictions around the globe,  it assesses the suitability of the individual to own and use firearms balanced against the needs of society.   Overseas experience clearly demonstrates that registration of firearms does not impact on their criminal use.  It is important that any call for change to existing  gun law is considered, balanced and conducted in the absence of emotion. 

The fact is that Jan Molenaar did not hold a firearms license, the firearms he did have were held illegally.  It is likely that Jan Molenaar was suffering from undiagnosed mental illness.  Jan Molenaar was known to the police.   Under current New Zealand gun law Jan Molenaar could never have qualified for a firearms license. 

In many instances the background to the events that unfolded in Napier remain unclear with numerous unanswered questions.  As information and facts are made available by the authorities over the coming weeks specific issues can and will be publicly debated. 

COLFO is prepared to assist and participate in both debate and review of current law and procedure and to contribute to any change should this be deemed necessary.