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Illegal possession of firearms must be non-bailable offense—police

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MANILA, Philippines—Concerned about several recent shooting incidents in shopping malls in the country, the national police urged for higher penalties to illegal possession of firearms as well as the stricter compliance for required equipment of security agencies.

Philippine National Police chief Director General Nicanor Bartolome said on Thursday they proposed to set illegal possession of firearms to be a non-bailable offense, since most criminals easily paid their way out of jail when caught.

Amendment to the law on gun control would be best, said the PNP chief, since “no matter how aggressive we are in the campaign on gun control, they could still post bail.”
Citing a botched robbery attempt in San Fernando, Pampanga, last year wherein a group was nabbed for targeting a bank but was able to pay the bail amount and moved on to committing other crimes, Bartolome said they proposed to make illegal possession of three guns or more by an individual or group a non-bailable offense. With this, criminals would not be able to get out of detention to commit more crimes.

He urged lawmakers to consider their proposal. “We hope they help us so we can intensify our campaign against bad elements that use guns,” he said.

Stricter regulation of gun control was also needed, according to the PNP chief. He said it was important to regulate who can own guns for personal safety, and who can own and carry firearms outside their homes. He said it would be best to control the processes of acquiring firearms and that it shouldn’t be a free-for-all scheme. “It couldn’t be a situation where anybody could possess a gun and have the authority to carry,” he said in Filipino.

Bartolome explained the responsibilities of a gun owner. He said those who own firearms for protection inside their homes were different from those who are permitted to carry their firearms outside.

Policies on security agencies’ requirements were also being reviewed, said the PNP chief, in relation to the twin shooting incidents that rocked shopping malls recently.

Bartolome questioned how firearms were carried past security guards and into shopping malls undetected.

He said he has instructed the chiefs of the national police’s Civil Security Group and Supervisory Office for Security and Investigation Agencies to “implement fully the provision that requires security agencies to have metal detectors and x-ray machine.”

He said the PNP has, to date, recovered some 300,000 out of the estimated 1.1 million loose firearms in the country. “This is a big help for us and we hope the campaign continues.”

Earlier this month, a 13-year-old boy and a woman slipped past security guards of two SM shopping malls carrying firearms.

The woman shot and killed her husband, who worked at SM North EDSA, and injured a security guard who tried to wrestle the gun from her hands.

The boy shot his 16-year-old male friend before committing suicide inside SM Pampanga.


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Tags: higher penalties , Illegal possession of firearms , PNP Chief Nicanor Bartolome , security agencies’ equipment , shooting incidents in malls


  • Guest

     “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” -Thomas Jefferson, quoting Cesare Beccaria.

  • Guest

     “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” -Thomas Jefferson, quoting Cesare Beccaria.

  • Guest

     “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” -Thomas Jefferson, quoting Cesare Beccaria.

  • Anonymous

     “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” -Thomas Jefferson, quoting Cesare Beccaria.

  • Anonymous

    “To disarm the people (is) the best and most effectual way to enslave them…” -George Mason, 3 Elliot, Debates at 380.

  • Anonymous

    They should have thought about this many years ago!!! By the way, you cant blame the public for wanting firearms — just go to the mall and you will come across shops that sell guns. What kind of a society are we evolving into? This practice magnifies the WANT to posses a firearm instead of promoting the NECESSITY in owning one.

    If they want to prevent crimes from illegal firearms, they should forbid the sales of these in the first place!

    • Anonymous

      Criminals will get their hands on firearms no matter how hard you try to stop them and doing things your way would only make everyone else including yourself vulnerable and helpless against them. Therefore, it is better to keep firearms legal and enforce reasonable restrictions on the type and quantity people can acquire rather than banning them outright. And on top of those restrictions, others should be put in place to keep guns AT HOME…not on the streets or on public places, making all three places safer for everyone.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5P6P3MFOHCEBRFKYI3MBKTYQQY ramser

    I would like to add that it should be non bailable even if there is just ONE gun. Who cares if the individual has more than one. It does not mean that he can only kill with more than one gun. So there should be no exceptions regardless of whether the president is a gun enthusiast. The law has to be amended for the greater good of the population.

  • Hunter Haynes

    I read this next to other threads such as “Foreigner shot and killed along Ortigas” among others. Both Filipinos and foreigners are the victims of assassinations and armed robberies. It seems that every citizen and legal resident should have some means to defend themselves.

    The government shouldn’t force law-abiding citizens to hand in their weapons used primarily for defense or sport. I was told by a police friend that less than 5% of firearm related crimes were with licensed firearms, that means that 95% of the crimes illegal firearms were used.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_F3OFL2CMHPTPOJ2LSRCKGWJWZ4 Montrealer

    It is better for them to post bail. Sigurado ang pera safe at pwedeng mapapunta sa gobyerno. Pag ginawang non-bailable ang illegal possesion, mas malaki ang ganansya ng pulis na makakahuli dahil tatakutin lang nya ang nahuli at maglalagay ng mas malaki. Tama na ang ganyang hokus pokus. Ang importante hulihin ang lahat ng walang pahintulot at ipakulong kung di makabayad ng bail. Pareho silang may lesson na at siguradong di na gagawa ng ganoon.

  • Anonymous

    Criminals don’t care about laws. Why? Because they’re criminals. If the police couldn’t catch criminals and protect the citizenry, then with this proposed law, law-abiding people are put between a rock and a hard place.

  • Anonymous

    An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FVOHKPIWQSANVIMDIYNJCPYYZ4 oscar

    It would be ideal to have control on unlicensed firearms and the permission to carry legal ones.If only the way police and other law enforcement agencies do not resort to extrajudicial means like planting evidences,sometimes wasting offenders by claiming they have illegal firearms or only depending themselves.If only they can only disarm groups similar to the Ampatuans,jail  people from the military who sells weapons to the criminals,then ours will be a society where we feel safe and sound.Well,I must be dreaming again !

  • Anonymous

    If guns cause crime, then matches cause arson. 

  • Anonymous

    Those who live by the sword, shall die by the sword,  Let this be knowned to those gun trotting Criiminals



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