Longer prison sentences coming for gun-related offences
The National Security Minister Robert Montague says the Firearms Act will be amended this year to provide longer prison sentences for gun-related offences.
Jamaica recorded more than 1,300 murders last year and the police say 80 per cent of those killings involved the use of a firearm.
Montague did not outline the changes to the Firearms Act being contemplated by the government, but warned criminal elements that the Government will get tougher.
As part of the changes to the Firearms Act, Montague says the government will direct the Firearm Licensing Authority (FLA) to implement measures to ensure that every licenced firearm holder accounts for the 50 rounds of ammunitions he or she is allotted each year.
"We have 40,000 licensed firearm holders in this country, and each of them get 50 rounds per year, 50 times 40,000 that's two million rounds. If 10 per cent get into the illegal hands that's a dangerous ... amount. If police have to account for every bullet that they have, the private firearm holder is going to be required to do the same," Montague said.
He says this year, the government will also enact changes to the Bail Act and the Fingerprint acts.