Project X. Raids Page.
Written by PX000367. An ex-met officer having been CID, Drugs squad and on various firearms related projects.
No person or building is safe.
It appears from stories told and our own dealings with the Home Office that there is something wrong with how the authorities deal with gun owners, military collectors, Airsofters etc. They get an unfair proportion of attention related to injuries or deaths caused. There is a void where there should be black and white guidelines. There seems to be a lot of "Tarring with the same brush" where a drug dealer with a gun gets the same sentence as a WW2 veteran keeping his presentation pistol etc. The recent gun bans have affected thousands of law abiding people because of the actions of one madman also resulting in our Olympic shooting teams having to practice abroad. There should be lists of released military equipment, there should be documents sent out every time the authorities change the rules to anyone putting themselves on the subscribers list. Millions of taxpayers money is wasted because even the authorities have no idea about what is allowed and what is not. One case involved a well known gun owner / collector / dealer who was probably targeted by a disgruntled member of an authority and whose case got to the Old Bailey only to be completely thrown out "Lock, Stock and Barrel". The member of the authority still "won" because he didn't have to foot the public bill which would have run into 6 figures, and because even though innocent until proven guilty, the victims weapons would have been thrown into the back of a van and scratched and dinged beyond salable condition, his neighbours would have seen everything. In this case the Mayor had to step in to publicly announce that there had been a frightening miscarriage of justice and that said victim was completely innocent. It was a grudge raid because that authority hasn't yet apologized and at the date of writing this the owner has not yet had all his guns back being in total disregard for the law and the Judges orders. Police state ? Damage to property is another area. My cousin was with a Police force for 18 years and found it "very satisfying" to break up peoples property even to get a response from the victim so that they could jump on him ! Project X goes through its collectibles on a regular basis and rings the Home Office if there is an item which may be in a grey area. The Home Office 90% of the time can't help ! Common answers have been : "The government hasn't told us yet." " You're opening a can of worms !" "I will look into it !" ( Never get an answer.) It has also become extremely difficult to get to the right department and we have spent £££s trying. Our solution now is to have a separate storage area away from your main residence and in the name of a completely inert friend or relative. If you are a small collector, a Big Yellow locker etc will do. If you have antique guns or de-activated guns unless you seal them in plastic and provide a strong smelling "screen" the "gun oil" dog will soon find them. Have only everyday things in your own house. Do not lock guns onto the wall. A famous case was when a gun owner during a raid was fiddling with keys for too long, a raider appeared with a pair of bolt croppers stating that he "couldn't wait" and cut through the trigger guards of 3 expensive 18th century rifles. The lesson learned is that despite there being a bigger threat of the gun being stolen and used by criminals, it does not pay you to lock the gun to the wall.
98% of raiders have never seen a gun except on T.V. where they think its acceptable ! A huge percentage of raiders can't tell the difference between a kids toy gun ( still on sale in vast numbers ) and a real gun. "Death by Cop" is when a victim emerges with a gun shaped harmless object and waves it about hoping to get shot knowing that most of the people waiting with guns outside will think its real. During a raid it is likely they will take everything "just in case" even if they have De-activation certificates hanging from them and in one case the box read "Tokyo Murai Model Gun". Your average collector will not normally have gun bags or blankets for all his guns and it would not even occur to the average raider that guns being thrown in the back of a van and then the constant rubbing during transit affects the price. Most big gun collectors are also relying on the prices going up for their "pension". An acquaintance of ours had a shotgun taken in whilst a small error was rectified on his licence and whilst it was in the police property room, was knocked over and a barrel was dented. When the barrel blew as a result of over pressure caused by the dent the property officer just said that it could have been dented "anywhere"! Heres a prime example of over reaction. The gun could have stayed at the owners address. After all he had owned it for 20+ years. Just because 2 figures on the serial number on the licence were reversed the Police assumed he was going to suddenly turn into a murderer ! So taking in the gun resulted in a far more life threatening situation.
Things that kill people.
Guns are way down the list. A wife using her own kitchen knife in her own kitchen is 100s of times more likely to kill her own husband than a person with a gun be it legal, illegal, re-activated, stolen or anything. At shows we usually get one woman try to tell you about how dangerous guns are and this fact normally renders them speechless. A collectible gun or a de-activation causing harm compared to kitchen knives runs into the millions to one more likely against the knives. Do you hear anyone complaining about kitchen knives ? Cars. Its more acceptable to kill a bus shelter full of school children with your car. This is classed as a complete accident and you may get a few years in jail. But have a mark on your de-activated gun that may look as if you have tried to reactivate it - 24 years. 100 year old stamps in stamp collections kill more people than guns. Mainly children who think its O.K. to lick them. Misdiagnosis by Doctors kills hundreds more people than guns. You are more likely to be struck by lightning than be shot. The statistics say being shot is about as likely as being in a plane crash. This equals very unlikely.
The difference between licensed gun owners killing people and unlicensed is a wide margin also. It is now commonly known and admitted that the pistol ban didn't make any difference because all the pistols taken from club shooters was just a publicity stunt to make it look like the government were doing something. They knew very well that it was not where the problem was and that they could not do anything about unlicensed ones. Unlicensed gun owners laughed and carried on as normal. Two secrets still not officially out is how much it cost the taxpayer to collect all the pistols ( Because we are not told and it is a 30 year government secret we can safely assume it must be about 2 billion ) and the difference between how many licensed pistols there were and how many were actually recovered. ( Again around the million mark. ) Many gun owners were criminalised overnight. Many gun owners who resisted were criminalised. There must be millions of weapons hidden all over the country. The general feeling is that as laws get tighter it is now not worth the bother of becoming legal. The one way to find out is to do what we have been saying all along and provide secure ranges where once a gun crosses the security area it is only then allowed to be transferred to another range by a licensed sect 5 courier. If people are allowed to fire anything at these ranges it gets it out of their system. It wipes out the legendary status guns have these days because they are used in all our favourite films and TV shows and it makes people frightened of them. If an amnesty were provided for owners to present their arm and register it at one of these ranges they would then see just what is out there and the country would become 98% safer. Also, it may encourage your average on / off drug dealer to place his gun in a secure environment where he could shoot it.
We have heard from the "horses mouth" that the reason the public are kept in the dark about what is legal (eg gun parts) is so that it is easier for raiding authorities to find something to "get" a victim on. i.e. ration packs. These are now marked "NOT FOR RESALE", " MOD USE ONLY" etc but are available in any surplus store. People have been got by this but 100% of cases have been thrown out of court. Lots of cases have been won because other stuff has been found and not for the original raid reason. Grey areas could be left on purpose. Remember, there will be a group of highly educated people sitting around a table, some with the idea of promotion, some trying to appease their bosses, that will be trying to make it easy for themselves knowing that if they do not produce guidelines then there will be a certainty that most people will have something they should no longer have and this equals a successful bust which equals great government figures. When did you hear of friends and family being interviewed about a victims real life to see if they were a danger to the public ? They will not do this because it may cause a Judge to change his mind.
Differences between forces.
Different areas seem to have different rules. Wales thinks the Brits are purposely "barking up the wrong tree" because it is easy to persecute law abiding gun owners than it is to persecute criminals with guns. Gun parts is another area. One area says all pressure bearing parts are illegal, another says that if you can take the part off a gun and it still fires you can own that part. i.e. a trigger is illegal but a trigger guard is not.
Evidence planting is a great tool to get someone with and unfortunately its your word against theirs. That is until the same bit of evidence mysteriously turns up in 2 different court cases. This has happened in the last 2 years so we can safely assume it still goes on.
Dropping yourself in it.
Do not say a word. Its much better for a solicitor to deal with what is fast becoming a minefield even for the average raiding authority member. Charges have been successful on a number of occasions where a victim has not realized something has been made illegal and has mentioned it. In one case a whole new group of people got involved in a mans case because he said, "Don't worry, my friends disposed of it. "
Treat the raiders as friends.
This makes it easier for the genuine members of an authority and the ones that have a personal grudge will be annoyed to hell and back ! Offer tea. Say politely that you would rather your solicitor dealt with this as you are not an expert. As we have covered already the real rules are not easily accessible to the average person. Always open the door immediately as this will be destroyed regardless and you could save yourself some money. Don't expect the authority to provide door repairs or a guard. Do not think a secret room or stuff hidden under floorboards is safe. Most authorities measure all rooms and can calculate "missing" space. Gun oil trained dogs can find your expensive collection wherever you hide it. If you want to guarantee your collection will not be scratched or thrown about remove it to a secure site not linked to yourself.
Gone are the days when a bobby will come and ask questions about something and give you a few days to right it. Its now surprise, surprise, surprise and get your victim to court and charged ( usually pushed for results by seniors ) regardless of if a person was a danger to the public or not. Smash the door down, destroy property, get the courts busy, boost the government figures and get those jails filled. Our changing world also has the following phenomena. Years ago people were amazed if you had a shiny new car and came and poured praise on you and had a good look around it etc. Nowadays they will ignore the fact and come back to scratch it at 4 in the morning. We took a gun to a show once for show only and a man tried to buy it. When we refused he went away, rung the police and told them we were trying to sell a live gun. These are the rats we are dealing with and they are breeding like them too. We used to take something to school in the 60s and everyone would marvel at it. Now it is likely to be destroyed by bitter and twisted friends. We were lucky. Two police turned up at our stall and although they new nothing about guns, allowed one of our operatives to show them how it was de-activated. If rat rings the Police telling them you are outside your house brandishing what he thinks is a weapon the armed response team has to respond. They do not send a normal beat bobby first ! It is allowed to brandish a chain saw or a hedge cutter or a sharp garden implement in your front garden though. Bitter and twisted is the norm for a long time to come.
Ask other people what happened to them. Be wary of being made to sit in one room with a raider. The ideal situation would be to be with one raider whilst he goes through your stuff. You can then say what is fragile, what is worth lots, eliminate petty theft ( yes , it goes on ). One person said he had everything wired with explosive booby traps so they had to take him with them when they went through his shed ! Most victims say they dropped themselves in it because of little known laws and very "practiced" trick questioning. Remember : whereas most laws are told to us or widely talked about in the media, gun related laws are constantly changing and unless you ring the Home Office twice a day you will not know. Some say this is to make sure theres always "something to get you on". Its backfired a bit because now most Police forces have different ideas. Its best not to say a word until you have talked to a gun savvy solicitor.
We are all human and if you see something you really like and there is no one else there there is still the tendency to pocket the item. We have not yet come across a person who has not lost stuff in a raid. I think the days of big wads of notes vanishing are over due to signing paperwork for items removed but small items that you can lead yourself to think will not be noticed could still disappear.
Lack of raiders knowledge.
Your average bobby only knows that his colleagues may one day be subject to a gun wealding criminal. Therefore anything with gun in the name is frightening and should be eliminated. Instantly anti-gun. Many officers are killed in police pursuits but for some reason the officers are not anti-car ! Media driven bias.
Media driven bias.
Guns still feature in film and TV. Cartoons have extreme violence. Theres a gun toting figure always after Bugs Bunny ! The shops are filled with plastic guns. Theres a gun being advertised on the TV now on Nickelodeon. When we do a show where we take guns the kids come flocking. If they had been to a range and heard the noise and felt the recoil and had to clean the thing after would they be so keen ? We did the "Who do we think we are" show at Olympia and the Londoners were flocking over the guns ! The human instinct is to not be deprived of anything. As soon as you try to eliminate something everyone will want it. The items then get the status of legend. When a cinema goer sees the baddie shot in a film theres a cheer. If you see a cowboy walking down the street with 2 guns on the way to a fancy dress nobody bats an eyelid. A man dressed in tweeds with an old English shotgun appears theres no reaction. When I was a kid we had a double barreled shotgun standing in the corner loaded all the time. We never thought anything of it. Now if anyone were to see that a big thing would be made of it. The government and their committees of "damp pussies" have now given guns legendary status.
Now you have to join a group and get a ID tag from the group before you can buy an airsoft gun. Admittedly these are now all metal and look like the real thing. ( A by-product of the Japanese gun laws only allowing toy guns.) But if you are not a member you can still buy the gun with the same power but it has to be a bright colour !! Which complete moron thought this one up ?? What would you do if you were a criminal ? PAINT IT BLACK !! DIDN'T ANYONE THINK OF THIS EXCEPT THE INFANT SCHOOL BOYS WITH THEIR HALFORDS SATIN BLACK AEROSOL PAINTS !! If anyone were going to raid a bank they would buy a real gun from East London pub or a foreign lorry driver and PAINT IT ORANGE !! Unbelievably stupid. It is a reflection of what type of people we have running this country. Did someone say that if you paint a model of a fully automatic machine pistol black it immediately becomes a section 5A weapon ? What if my son cuts out a gun shape from paper and paints it black ? I'm not even going there. These people making these laws obviously just want to get the meeting over with and get down the pub.
The worst weapons.
Luckily we still have rifles capable of killing at over a mile and shotguns capable of horrendous injury and all we have to do to get one and keep it at home is join a club. Why is this ? Probably because most Members of Parliament class bird shooting as an ancient pastime and part of being an Aristocrat or have seen Prince Charles doing it and so therefore it must be sacred or do it themselves and rifles are along the same lines as Bisley is in the same category as Ascot and Henley and therefore is upper class where they think they are headed for. What would change if the Queen started shooting with a machine gun ? What shoe licking monstrosities would suddenly appear ? Keeping these really lethal guns at home with such small related crime figures just shows the reality of gun ownership and that is that it is safe. Safer than air travel.
Hard drives and mobiles.
Most authorities have a system capable of dissecting a hard drive back to bytes. Imagine your hard drive is a mansion full of rooms. On each door is a sign. It may say "Photos" etc. If you erase the photos the computer just takes the sign off the door. In the mansion a janitor will come later on and empty the room and fill it with something else. Meanwhile the "boxes" are still in the room. In your computer the contents itself will not be erased until the computer requires the space. The new disk reading systems in use can read all those "boxes" left behind. The good thing is your computer can be returned to you soonest and in some cases only the hard drive will be taken. A keyword program will be used to search for relevant words probably relating to the case. There is a percentage chance that they may find something else and book you for that instead. A recent story was one chap selling on E-Bay, bought a sight from a stall at his local market, placed it on E-Bay where it was seen by MOD contractors looking for restricted items and was raided. He was cleared of the sight buying problem as the buyer is the criminal in these cases but was convicted for distributing indecent images found when his hard drives were searched. My friend was working as an operator at a U.S. listening post in this country and used to tell me they had a computer capable of monitoring hundreds of phone frequencies looking for keywords which would then switch on a recorder or save the whole call.
Mobile phones it is said can be switched on and off remotely and use of the microphone can be activated without your knowledge. Usually starts with a call with no person on the other end. Most criminals switch it off and take the battery out or leave it next to the TV or other constant sound source. I personally believe this is a myth planted to make people not use mobiles in crime although the tracking of mobiles is very real. It is possible to tell if you are at home !
Cash and bullets.
We think the days of cash disappearing during raids have all but gone due to paperwork done at the scene. BUT. Even if you are had for a single live bullet etc and it goes through court then they can take your cash as proceeds of crime along with cars and property. This seems to have been abused because even an old man with a .303 bullet that he brought back from the war could cause him to have his £2000 wheelchair to be cashed in as proceeds of crime! Check all your dummy bullets. A few Malvern shows ago a person was selling"dummy" ammo from a carrier bag that looked like untouched army ammo. To those who he approached, he was very well presented, and later we heard that someone was raided for some other reason and some of this "Dummy" ammo was found and when checked, was live. There is currently no official way of marking dummy ammo. Drill rounds are usually a different colour, solid brass or metal and some of the older stuff has red painted indentations on the case. Was this a sting to see who would buy it ? Nobody recognized the chap as a regular show goer, the "ammo" was far too cheap. Remember, a maximum sentence for even one round ! Veterans included.
Its O.K. you can buy and sell these as they are a non-gun. Who thought that one up ? Most police forces we have dealt with say licensing or anything else enforced on de-ac owners will be unpoliceable. When we first used military shows as a method of disposing of unused film props we were able to sell air rifles, airsoft guns, etc but now they are all under licence and to sell air weapons you have to be a Registered Firearms Dealer !! Luckily we can still sell de-activated fully automatic weapons and heavy machine guns !
The most feeble excuses are being use to raid not only individuals but also major companies. Sabre Defence has a factory in Northolt, London and the U.S. where it makes barrels for the machineguns used by the American army. Now there is a lesser demand for these barrels they have dredged up some excuse to put them out of business as it is owned by an Englishman. They have now found an excuse to extend this to the English factory which has just been shut down for the same reasons. The reason is a paperwork issue but has led to the owner being arrested ( with bail of around £1 million being turned down ) and is said to be awaiting extradition to the U.S. Us stupid English are letting these goons walk all over us. The same theme comes to mind. The disarming of Europe.
Another American thing. This is a bit sketchy but as we understand it someone from York guns took some AK 47 magazines from China to the Las Vegas Shotshow. What do the Yanks do ? Convince the lilly livered English that this is a violation of some law or another and get them to raid York Guns and use the excuse to revoke licences etc.
Imperial Defence ?
Ray Mills ?
Joss Thompson ?
Its like someone has sat his henchmen around a big expensive table paid for by the taxpayer and has decided to shut down the arms industry. When they have disarmed us all they then have full control like Syria. If we decided we do not like the heavy handed authorities theres actually nothing we could do about it. Voting : Thats a laugh. Theres only 2 parties that could win and they are as bad as each other. I can't really say bad because every M.P. takes office with the intention of making changes for the good of us all but this super complicated supertanker of a democracy is taking on more and more oil (asylum seekers, benefit cheats, super expensive drugs and medical equipment in the NHS, foreign workers sending money abroad, paying Europe, cost of keeping armies abroad etc. etc.) that anyone who tries their hand at the wheel can't turn it anymore !
Just to show you how paranoid the authorities here have got heres a final story ...
A friend of mine bought a row of four derelict cottages in France. He would go and work on these on some weekends. He did the end one up quickly so he could live in it while he renovated the other 3. One day he was up a ladder on the second property when an old woman came into view. He hurried down the ladder in an effort to be friendly and said hello. During the conversation it transpired the old ladies Father was in the resistance during the war and actually lived in cottage no. 2 where her father went on operations from. The lady showed him around telling stories about the war when she reached under a sink and tugged at a piece of wood. She said that the Bren gun was still there ! It was hidden on a night when a container of equipment was dropped locally. The container contained Sten sub machine guns and this one Bren Light machine gun. Although there is the word "light" in its title it was not and nobody in the resistance team wanted to carry it. Besides, there were enough Sten guns to go around. It was then hidden. After she had gone he extracted the Bren from its hiding place. It was still covered in grease and wrapped in an oily sheet. I met this chap when I sold him the magazines for it at a show. I told him how to take it to pieces and to dip everything in thinners, scrub it all with a toothbrush and then dip everything in fresh oil. He would get all his loading equipment from Gun Mart and reload the .303 ammo for the Bren whilst in France and then nip down the woods for a shoot. One day he was in the prone position firing fully automatic bursts at a 40 gallon drum when he felt a tap on the back. It was the local policeman pushing a bike. He started talking about how good the cottages looked and who he had met and talked for about a half hour in relatively good English. Finally, he said he had to go and started pushing the bike back over the grass to the path. He was about 10 meters away when he turned round and pointing at the Bren gun said "By the way, I don't want to see that again."
Webmasters note : Great entry by this writer but we need updates from raided civilians and raiding authorities alike to make sure we are hearing both sides of the story. Please E-Mail if you have any information.