Offensive Weapons Bill

Further submission by Alastair Fisher Jt Managing Director Taylors Eye Witness Ltd (OWB128)

1. I have received a copy of the Home Office`s response to the Parliamentary Petition asking for the removal of Para 15 from the Bill. The response fails to provide any link between the delivery of knives to residential addresses and the growth in knife crime.

2. Available from Scotland Yard are photographs of offensive weapons taken from young people by The Metropolitan Police. I have seen the photographs. The vast majority of the items are "much used" kitchen knives. If the Committee have not seen these photographs may I suggest they do so urgently. I would be more than happy to provide the contact details of The Metropolitan Police employees who have access to them.

3. It is safe to say that none of the kitchen knives seized by The Met Police had been purchased for criminal use by under 18s by way of on line shopping. Every knife will have come from the existing population of 400,000,000 knives that there are in circulation. – see my earlier submission

4. In their response to the Petition The Home Office states that test purchases made, I assume, by Trading Standards had found that some web sites do not properly enforce the age current restrictions. In that case Trading Standards should prosecute the offenders and ultimately close them down but also they should praise best practice used by many on line retailers. It is only recently that delivery companies began offering age related delivery services. To ban all deliveries of Kitchen Knives to residential addresses is an unfair restriction on our freedom to trade. A proportion of motorists drive whilst drunk but the government does not attempt to ban driving altogether.

5. The legislation would appear to be driven by Trading Standards and not by those who understand the motives and opportunities of the criminals now engaged in Knife crime. It will not prevent a single stabbing!

6. I have spoken to a number of senior Met Police employees, none were aware of The Bill and all agreed that it was a pointless exercise that will not prevent a single crime.

7. Conclusion. The Bill will not prevent a single crime and it is an unwarranted handicap to honest, law abiding, tax-paying businesses. The current age restriction laws, if properly enforced, are a sufficient barrier to young people buying knives on line. The full effects of the cost of The Bill (if past) on knife makers and distributors will only be known in the future as the extent of the move from bricks and mortar retail to on line trading becomes known.

8. Plea. I am an ordinary tax payer outraged by the futility of The Bill and would beg that you listen to me and the very many other parties making submissions, before you rubber stamp this crazy law. I am available at any reasonable time.

August 2018

 

Prepared 13th August 2018