Search warrants await holders of guns with expired licenses-A A +A
Sunday, January 6, 2013
POLICE Regional Office Director Agrimero Cruz warned holders of guns with expired licenses that search warrants will be out soon against them.
Cruz said they have been calling to those firearm holders with expired licenses to renew their licenses as he emphasized the police campaign against loose firearms.
To date, Task Force "Armas" has recorded a total of 33,067 loose firearms as of August 30, 2012, and PRO-Western Visayas has already visited 11,061 owners of formerly registered firearms.
The task force is headed by Police Senior Superintendent Wesley Barayuga, deputy regional director of PRO Western Visayas.
Cruz said 2,247 gun holders have renewed their gun licenses while 3,807 signified their intention to renew following the creation of the task force.
Result of visitations of Task Force Armas revealed several reasons for expired gun licenses: licensees dead (454 cases), licensees changed addresses (2,237), addresses of licensees cannot be located/non-existent (923); firearms were lost (250); firearms were sold but ownerships were not transferred (425), licensees denied owning a firearm (50), firearms are on process of transfer of ownership (352), firearms are on process of donation (144), firearms were turned in (68) and firearms are under "custodia legis" (39).
Cruz also said that starting January 13, the start of election period, police units will gather additional evidence for the application of search warrants, especially against those who possess loose guns and failed to apply for renewal.
Cruz warned that there will be no issuance of new gun licenses during the election period, and the gun ban will be effective January 13, 2013 until June 12, 2013 as ordered by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
The resolution specifies that new licenses and firearms will not be released to their owners and will be instead kept at the Firearms and Explosives Units and Satellite Offices of the Civil Security Group in Police Regional Offices.
Cruz also said that the gun ban is absolute and only law enforcers who are in uniform and on duty are allowed to carry guns outside their residences.
Cruz said, however, that processing, approval and issuance of gun licenses for renewal continue.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on January 07, 2013.