27 Sep 2010

Samoa police chief issues warning to owners of illegal guns

2:45 pm on 27 September 2010

Samoa's police commissioner, Lilomaiava Fou Taialo, says it's important police are informed about illegal firearms, otherwise preventable tragic shootings will occur.

Last week a man, originally from American Samoa, used a pistol to wound his wife and then kill himself.

The Police Commissioner says this is what happens when warnings against illegal firearms and amnesties are ignored - and the police are not told of the existence of illegal firearms.

He says the owners end up using them either on others or on themselves in moments of uncontrolled anger.

The Commissioner says the only firearms allowed in the country are shotguns and bolt action .22 calibre rifles for the protection of farms and licences must be obtained from police.

The Samoa Observer newspaper has called for another amnesty to be held to collect illegal firearms.

It's also advocating an upgrade of the surveillance ability of customs officials.