Source of gang weapons surprises police

Police task force investigations reveal that many illegal weapons come from otherwise upstanding citizens

The pop-up series 'Clothes make the man – Africa in Denmark' will be appearing all over the city (photo: Morten Vest)
May 15th, 2012 2:07 pm| by admin
facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail

Investigations from the police unit Task Force East have discovered that many of the illegal weapons that end up in the hands of gangs stem from older, upstanding citizens without a criminal record.

The task force is currently involved in three larger cases. One involves 40 weapons being stolen from the Antvorskov military barracks in 2009, for which four men have been arrested. Another involves a 69-year-old man from Odsherred who was convicted earlier this month for being part of ten weapons exchanges. Another man in that case, a 64-year-old from Grenaa, is suspected in engaging in a similar number of weapons transactions. The third large case involves a 53-year-old man from Greve, who is charged with selling three 9mm pistols to members of the Bandidos gang, which they used in their conflict against the Black Cobra gang. That case goes to court tomorrow.

Police have indicated that a common thread amongst many of the cases is that those involved are gun enthusiasts or have been members of the Danish National Guard or various shooting clubs, although police said that the weapons seized have not come directly from the clubs.

”The situation revolves around a number of men who have access to weapons, can obtain them and then sell them on to the gangs,” Magnus Andresen, an inspector for Task Force East, told Politiken newspaper. “We devoted our attention on the supply routes and that has uncovered the Danish market. It has been a surprise for us because we initially believed that the weapons mostly came from the foreign markets.”

The justice minister, Morten Bødskov (Socialdemokraterne), was pleased with the increase in weapons seizures and admits that illegal weapons in Denmark have become a serious problem. He said illegal weapons units would be expanded.

“We are stepping up efforts against organised crime by establishing Task Force West in Jutland. This method has proven to be right tool to get to grips with the often complicated criminal networks,” Bødskov told Politiken. “It’s a very serious crime and I am pleased with the efforts of Task Force East.”

The number of illegal pistols and machine guns seized by Task Force East has increased dramatically in the last two years. After seizing 50 weapons in 2010, that number shot up to 337 in 2011. Some 350 weapons have already been recovered by the unit so far in 2012.

The pop-up series 'Clothes make the man – Africa in Denmark' will be appearing all over the city (photo: Morten Vest)
Free bus routes and visibly African roots at Copenhagen Fashion Week
Copenhagen Fashion Week kicks off next Wednesday with a line-up that includ...
Speed cameras are raking it in (photo: Tomasz Sienicki)
Recordbreaking number of speeders and fines
A single automatic traffic control (ATK) vehicle, which was set up on the H...
A scene not to be seen in a section of Aarhus being developed (photo: Robert Jack)
Aarhus to get traffic-free residential section
A new urban development project underway in Aarhus will feature everything ...
The renovation of the sewage system in Copenhagen has driven rats from the canals into buildings (photo: Wes)
Copenhagen swamped by rats
Copenhagen Municipality received 3,300 notifications about rats in the firs...
Too cold for a cold one? (Photo: Asiabasia)
Lousy summer weather costing beer producers
It's probably not a surprise, but people drink less beer when the summer fe...
Ticks are carrying a new strain of bacteria (Photo: CDC/ Dr. Christopher Paddock)
Ticks carrying a new form of bacteria
A new strain of Borrelia bacterium is making its way to Denmark is making i...