MORE than 100 firearms have been handed in to police stations in Dorset since a surrender campaign began last week.

Weapons ranging from BB guns to pistols have been surrendered to the force, and anyone else in possession of illegal or unregistered firearms and ammunition has until the evening of Sunday, November 26, to turn them in.

Led by the National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NABIS), the surrender offers safe disposal of unlawful firearms or ammunition, and those who hand in weapons or ammunition will not be arrested for illegal possession at the point of surrender.

They can also remain anonymous. The history of each live weapon will be checked for evidence of previous use associated with crime.

During the last surrender in 2014, Dorset Police received 93 weapons and a large amount of ammunition.

So far this surrender, Dorset Police has received 47 air weapons, 21 shotguns, eight revolvers, two rifles, nine pistols, 15 imitation firearms, four deactivated, and almost 50 ammunition surrenders.

When the surrender was first announced, Michelle Mounsey, firearms and explosives licensing manager for the alliance of Dorset Police and Devon and Cornwall Police, said: “We want to take out of circulation any type of firearm and ammunition, which includes guns which can still be fired, antique or unwanted collectible weapons, replica weapons, air weapons, BB guns, stun guns and ammunition that are no longer required. This is an opportunity to surrender firearms and not be charged with illegal possession.

“Remember that outside of the surrender period, if police find you in possession of a firearm without a current certificate, then you may be subject of court proceedings which may lead to a custodial sentence.”

A deactivated firearm is no longer a viable firearm as part of its mechanism has been removed. An imitation firearm looks like a firearm but has never had a firing mechanism.

Members of the public can surrender firearms and ammunition to Bournemouth, Poole and Weymouth police stations during opening hours. No firearms or ammunition should be left outside of any police station.

Bournemouth Police Station in Madeira Road is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm, and Saturday and Sunday, 9am to 5.30pm.

Poole Police Station in Wimborne Road is open Monday to Friday, 8am to 5.30pm and closed Saturday and Sunday.