Parliament discusses Duncan’s gun decree

POSTED: 03/8/11 12:30 PM

St. Maarten – The parliament will discuss tomorrow afternoon Justice Minister Roland Duncan’s ministerial decree that regulates the conditions for gun licenses. Recently, chief Prosecutor Mr. Hans Mos vehemently opposed the gun legislation.
The decree states that it is deemed necessary, “in the interest of public order and safety, to re-formulate the conditions for gun licenses.
There are six conditions in the decree. An applicant for a gun license must submit a psychological statement that he is fit to bear a gun; a certificate that reflects his shooting ability that is recognized by the police force; a statement about his behavior, issued by the Justice Minister; and a medical test issued by a physician.
The applicant needs to store his gun in a weapons safe that has been approved by the police force. The gun owners must also follow shooting exercises at least three times per year; once a year he must do a shooting test at the police force.
In the explanatory notes, the Minister writes that his decree is based on advice he asked and obtained from the Public Prosecutor’s office and the police force. “Our decree is for the better part based on this advice,” the Minister states in the document.
The weapons safe for hand guns must have a minimal rating of UL RSC, and weigh at least 350 pounds (159 kilos); a safe for hunting rifles must weigh at least 750 pounds, or 340 kilos.
Gun licenses are for one weapon only; the caliber may not exceed 9 mm for a pistol, or 0.38 inch for a revolver. Applicants must at least be eighteen years of age.

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