Gun-controlled Australia is witnessing gun crime at such high levels that state and federal officials are pushing new controls that will do everything from enact a second national gun buyback to increase sentences for gun crime and illegal gun possession.
On September 11, Breitbart News reported that Melbourne, Australia, has witnessed more than one shooting a week since January 2015. The Age reported, “Crimes associated with firearm possession have also more than doubled, driven by the easy availability of handguns, semi-automatic rifles, shotguns and, increasingly, machine guns, that are smuggled into the country or stolen from licensed owners.”
Now The Age reports that Melbourne’s gun problems extend to all of Victoria and often show themselves in violence against police officers.
For example, just in the course of the last year:
- A police officer has been shot in the head with a shotgun blast after attempting to stop a vehicle suspected to have been involved in a series of shooting and firebombing attacks on the homes of the Williams crime family.
- A police van was shot as officers attempted to intercept a suspected stolen vehicle.
- Members of the Hells Angels bike gang were believed to be behind bullets being fired into a police building in a suspected revenge attack.
When Breitbart News first reported on Melbourne’s soaring gun crime, the city’s experience was compared to Chicago, where gun control experiment after gun control experiment has simply correlated with guns being consolidated in the hands of criminals. That comparison is even more apropos now that The Age reports one of the problems in Melbourne — and Victoria overall — is that penalties for gun crimes are not being enforced.
The Age quotes County Court Judge Lance Pilgrim, who said, “I am now becoming an old ancient; when I first worked in the courts 54 years ago, 55 years ago … the maximum for possession of a handgun, first offence, was 12 months. Now look what has happened. In that time it has gone, if I am remembering correctly, from 12 months to seven years. That is a 700 percent increase.” Yet the penalty — severe as it sounds — is rarely enforced. The Sentencing Advisory Council indicates “less than half of criminals are ultimately sent to prison after being found guilty of possessing an unregistered firearm.”
The National Rifle Association offered what is now an interesting parallel via the example of Chicago. Amercia’s 1st Freedom reported:
In 2014 in Chicago, over 2,500 people were shot—nearly 400 of them fatally—and police seized more than 6,252 guns. Yet out of those 6,252 guns seized… federal prosecutors saw fit to pursue just 62 weapons prosecutions. In other words, for every 100 guns police seized, federal prosecutors made just one prosecution.
Lawmakers in Illinois — including Republican Governor Bruce Rauner — have responded to Chicago’s surging gun crime by passing even more gun controls, which is the same approach Australia is now considering.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.