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Written Answers - Firearms Licensing

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 760 No. 3

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 456.  Deputy Michael Creed Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed  asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter  his views on evidence furnished at a recent High Court case (details supplied); the actions he proposes to take regarding the operation of the current firearms licensing system as a result; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16496/12]

 473.  Deputy Eoghan Murphy Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy  asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter  if he has considered a matter (details supplied) regarding firearms licensing. [16816/12]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I propose to take Questions Nos. 456 and 473 together.

I take it the Deputies are referring to a recent High Court case involving Judicial Reviews of decisions by Chief Superintendents in firearms cases. What was at issue were decisions by Chief Superintendents to refuse applications for licences for high calibre handguns. That case was settled with no admission of wrongdoing on the part of the State but with an undertaking to consider applications afresh and give reasons to applicants where applications are turned down.

In an interim report which I received from the Garda Commissioner he indicated that he was reviewing certain aspects of the operation of the firearms licensing system and I await a further report from him.

Tragically, the House will have been reminded in recent weeks of the dangers which licensed firearms can pose for members of An Garda Síochána and others and of the dangers of firearms generally. For my part, I am determined to ensure that in the operation of the firearms licensing system, the question of public safety is paramount.


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