Firearms Offences Solicitors
Here at Gray and Co Solicitors we regularly represent those charged with a range of firearm offences involving the use or possession of firearms. If you or someone you know has been accused of a firearms offence; ranging from the possession of a firearm to the importation of illegal firearms, we highly advise contacting our friendly team of solicitors immediately for free, expert legal advice. Penalties can range from a fine to a custodial sentence depending on the circumstances of the offence and the type of weapon in question.
Being Charged with a Firearms Offence
Firearms are defined by the Firearms 1968 Act as “a lethal barrelled weapon of any description from which any shot, bullet or other missile can be discharged”. Although these offences can be dealt with in the Magistrates Court they are more commonly found in the Crown Court due to the Sentencing Guidelines. In particular, more serious firearms offences will be dealt with in the Crown Court due to inadequate sentencing powers in the Magistrates Courts. Firearms offences include: Possession of Firearms by Adults; Criminal Use of Firearms; Acquisition and Possession of Firearms and Air Weapons by Minors and Importation of Firearms.
Possession of Firearms by Adults
Possessing a firearm without a valid certificate is a criminal offence which carries a maximum sentence of 6 months imprisonment/maximum fine when tried in the Magistrates Court and a maximum sentence of 7 years imprisonment/£5000 fine when tried in the Crown Court. A number of different factors can determine which court the offence is tried in, including past convictions and the intended use of the weapon.
If you’ve been charged with firearm possession or require legal representation for someone who has been charged with possession of a firearm than we strongly advise you get in touch with us for legal support. We will support you from your initial police interview right through to the trial, simply give us a call on 01244 344299 or use our online contact form.
Criminal Use of Firearms
The Firearms Act 1968 covers the possession of a firearm or imitation firearm with the following intentions:
- To endanger the life of someone else (maximum sentence 10 years imprisonment);
- To cause the victim to fear violence (maximum sentence life imprisonment);
- To resist lawful arrest or prevent the lawful arrest of another person (life imprisonment);
- To commit an indictable offence (life imprisonment).
Possessing a firearm (loaded or unloaded) along with ammunition and entering a public place without lawful authority or reasonable justification is also classed as a criminal use of firearms and carries a maximum sentence of seven years imprisonment.
Sentencing varies depending on the type of weapon used in each offence, previous convictions of the alleged offender amongst a variety of other aggravating and mitigating factors. Some firearm offences carry a minimum penalty due to their potential impact and danger they pose. If you’ve been charged with possessing a firearm with criminal intent it’s vital you contact a Firearms Solicitor like Gray and Co for legal representation and defence.
Acquisition and Possession of Firearms and Air Weapons by Minors
Here at Gray and Co Solicitors we also have experience of representing minors (those under 18 years of age) who have been charged with possessing firearms and air weapons. We understand that this can be an incredibly distressing time for the rest of the family so we can’t stress enough how important it is you contact a solicitor to defend the minor.