Cape Town – The Western Cape Anti-Gang Unit says it remains committed to bring perpetrators to book.
This is after it acted on a information on Tuesday, at about 09:30, and arrested two men, who were found in possession of unlicensed firearms at the Bishop Lavis Magistrates’ Court.
“Police were conducting crime prevention duties in the court when they observed two men carrying firearms, and upon investigation, it was discovered that the licenses that the suspects produced were invalid,” said police spokesperson, Sergeant Noloyiso Rwexana.
“The two men, aged 30 and 42, were arrested and three firearms, an automatic rifle with 60 rounds of ammunition and two 9mm pistols with 45 rounds of ammunition were seized.”
How many firearms are in South Africa
She said that the suspects are expected to appear in the Bishop Lavis Magistrate’s Court where they will be facing charges of possession of unlicensed firearms and ammunition.
According to the Small Arms Survey report of 2018, an estimated 5,351,000 firearms are in civilian possession in South Africa – placing it as the 20th highest country in the world in terms of the number of guns within its borders.
Still, while number of register civilian gun owners is low in South Africa, when compared to other countries like the United States and Saudi Arabia, the country has a high number of unregistered/illicit firearms circulating among communities.
Of the 5 million firearms, only around 3 million are registered (legal) firearms. The rest are unregistered and are often used in crimes like murders and robberies, which remain a concern in the country.
Effectively, there are 9.65 firearms per every 100 persons in South Africa.
The various law enforcement agencies in the country have around 250 481firearms and the SA Defence Force has around 350 636 military firearms.