A Lithuanian vet has been putting ‘hundred’s of guns on to the streets of London and Manchester’, apparently.
The Guardian reports:
‘Hundreds of relatively low-powered gas pistols are known to have been converted to discharge live ammunition in a workshop in the [ancient Lithuanian market town of Kedainiai] before being smuggled into the UK. Improbably enough, the man at the heart of the trade was a local vet.’
The vet, Andrius Raba, had apparently been buying up cheap Russian air guns, fitting them with silencers and strengthening the barrels to take higher powered ammunition and then selling them on to gun-crazed Brits at 300 pounds a time.
This news comes in the wake of four nasty murders of young guys in south London, where I am from. One of the victims was only 15 years old.
Of course, a media panic has been full of the usual hand wringing about the growth of gun crime in the UK and what to do about it.
With relief then, they can point to outsiders from places like Lithuania for being partly responsible. Blaming outsiders brings, as usual, some comfort – nasty foreigners are to blame for all our problems.
But the reality of the ‘growing menace of gun crime’ in the UK is very different from the media fantasy land.
Despite gory stories of guns flooding into the UK over the past ten years, the figures of homicide from gun shot in that period look like this:
1998/1999 - 49
1999/2000 - 62
2000/2001 - 72
2001/2002 - 95
2002/2003 - 80
2003/2004 - 68
2004/2005 - 77
2005/2006 - 50
So, over the last few years murder from a bullet has been falling in Britain, not rising.
Those figures account for one murder in ten in the UK. You are much more likely to be murdered by a hand or a boot than you are a gun.
So though ‘Eastern Europeans’ have been flooding into Britain, bringing their custom made air pistols with them, the UK is not in the middle of a gun massacre, and death from fire arms remains a very rare occurrence in Britain.
Shooting down the myth of the ‘gun culture’, spiked