§ Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what inquiries are made before licences are issued for the possession of shotguns; and whether, in view of the recent case in which a 17-year-old schizophrenic was permitted to purchase a repeater shotgun for the purpose of killing a girl acquaintance, he will give instructions for more stringent inquires to be made before such licences are issued.
§ Mr. Maudling
The issue of a shotgun certificate is a matter for the chief officer of police. Under the Firearms Act, 1968, he must grant a certificate unless he has reason to believe that the applicant is prohibited by the Act from possessing a shotgun or cannot be allowed to do so without danger to the public safety or to the peace; and it is his responsibility to decide what inquiries, either by interview or by a search of records, should be made in any particular case. In the case to which my right hon. Friend refers, the police knew of no reason to refuse a certificate.
The control of all kinds of firearms is under review.