Message from the Chief Commissioner

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Imitation Firearm Amendments

Release date: Tue 9 August 2011

Last updated: Mon 24 August 2015

Current amnesty relating to 'laser tag' devices that resemble operative firearms ceases on 30 June 2014

The conclusion of the amnesty will mean that from 1 July 2014, the new regulatory system is due to come into effect and owners/operators of such devices will need to take action to legalize their position by this date.

Under this new system, a Chief Commissioner's Prohibited Weapons Approval or a Governor in Council Exemption will be required to import, purchase, manufacture, possess, sell, carry or use laser tag and other laser sport devices.

A Quick Guide regarding Laser Tag and Other Sport Devices has been created which outlines the types of devices which will be regulated along with instructions on how to apply for a Chief Commissioner's Approval.  

Differentiating between an imitation firearm and a toy or other firearm paraphernalia

There are a wide variety of firearm-themed items available on the market aimed at children and firearm enthusiasts. Depending on the overall appearance and function of these items, some may be classified as a registrable firearm or an imitation firearm (and therefore require an authority from Victoria Police) regardless of the intent of the manufacturers.

The information contained within this page and downloadable Quick Guide to imitation, toy and other firearm paraphernalia has been published to assist you to recognise the distinguishing characteristics of an imitation firearm as opposed to a toy or other firearm paraphernalia to ensure that you comply with Victorian laws in this area.

As a general principle, items that cannot be mistaken for a working firearm by a reasonable person, nor have the function of a firearm, can be lawfully possessed by anyone and are not regulated by Victoria Police. Victoria Police classifies these as toy firearms or other firearm-themed paraphernalia as they are easily distinguishable by certain characteristics.

Items that do have the appearance of a working firearm but do not function as such are classified as imitation firearms. Whilst these items cannot cause death or injury they can nonetheless cause public alarm due to their closeness to a working firearm and therefore could be mistaken for a working firearm depending on the circumstances and level of knowledge of those in contact with it when carried or used within the community.

Because of their closeness to working firearms, an Approval of the Chief Commissioner or Governor in Council Exemption issued under the Control of Weapons Act 1990 is required to possess, carry, use or offer an imitation firearm for sale in the State of Victoria.

If, after reading the above information you require further clarification, it is recommended that you either refer to the 'What is a Firearm chart', contact your local Divisional Firearms Officer or e-mail licensingregulation@police.vic.gov.au, together with a photo of, or link to, the item(s) in question.

 

 
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