Removal of a firearms dealer from a public register

Sections 38 and 45 of the Act, as amended, deal with the removal of a dealer's name or place of business from the police register. A dealer's name or any place of business may be removed if he fails to comply with the conditions of registration.

A place of business may also be removed from the register if the Chief Officer is satisfied that carrying on the business there would constitute a danger to the public safety or to the peace (section 38 (4)).

A dealer's name may either be removed:

Section 38 (1) - "If the Chief Officer of Police, after giving reasonable notice to a person whose name is on the register, is satisfied that the person:

They shall, subject to this section, cause the name of that person to be removed from the register.

A person aggrieved by the removal of his name from the register of dealers or by the removal from the register of a place of business of his, may in accordance with section 44 of the Act appeal to the Crown Court against the removal. (Section 38 (7) of the Act refers).

Such an appeal may only be lodged after removal has been effected. Although the certificate of registration and register of transactions may be retained by the dealer pending the appeal hearing, any trade at the relevant premises must cease.

Section 38 (5) - 'The Chief Officer of Police shall cause the name of a person to be removed from the register if that person so desires'. The registered person should be required first to dispose of all firearms and ammunition not authorised by a personally held firearm or shotgun certificate.

Section 38 (6) - 'If a person for the time being registered fails to comply with any requirements of section 33 (5) of this Act (renewal of registration ), the Chief Officer of Police shall by notice in writing require them to comply with that requirement and, if the person fails to do so within twenty-one days from the date of the notice, or within such further time as the Chief Officer of Police may in special circumstances allow, shall cause his name to be removed from the register'.

Section 45 (1) (a) - 'Where a registered firearms dealer is convicted of an offence relevant for the purposes of this section the court may order that the name of the dealer be removed from the register.'

Section 45 (3) - 'A person aggrieved by an order made under this section may appeal against the order in the same manner as against the conviction, and the court may, if it thinks fit, suspend the operation of the order pending the appeal.'

In any case where a Chief Officer of Police removes the name of a firearms dealer from the register, they must, under section 38 (8) of the Act, by notice in writing require the dealer to surrender his certificate of registration and register of transactions. The dealer commits an offence if they fail to do so within 21 days of that notice, or of the date of the abandonment or dismissal of any appeal.

It should be noted that those dealers wishing to manufacture, sell, transfer, purchase, acquire, or possess prohibited weapons as defined by section 5 of the Act, as amended, must apply separately to The Secretary of State at The Home Office.

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