Politics

Think Australia’s Gun Control Is Great? Here Are The Suburbs Full Of Thousands Of Guns

There are 100 individuals across NSW who own private gun arsenals with more than 70 firearms.

The total number of guns registered in NSW has increased by 65,000 in the past two years and now totals over 900,000, according to new data obtained by the NSW Greens. The research also reveals that due to a loophole in gun control laws some gun owners in the state own hundreds of firearms.

The private gun ownership data was obtained through a Freedom of Information request and has been broken down by postcode. One individual in Sydney’s south-east owns a huge private cache of 305 guns. A resident in Mosman, on Sydney’s lower north shore owns 285 guns.

There are 100 individuals across NSW who own private gun arsenals with more than 70 firearms. The Sydney suburbs of Riverstone and Macquarie Park are each home to over 7,000 registered weapons, and the Central Coast suburb of Gosford has over 8,000 registered guns.

Gun laws have been back in the spotlight recently following the tragic mass shooting in Las Vegas earlier this month which left nearly 60 people dead and hundreds more injured. Australia’s gun laws are much stricter than those in the US, however local gun control advocates have been warning against complacency.

Research has shown that no state government is currently fully implementing the terms of the National Firearms Agreement, reached in 1996 in the wake of the Port Arthur massacre.

The numbers publicised by the NSW Greens only include registered firearms. A recent gun amnesty led to 51,000 illegal guns being handed in to police.

According to NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge, a “loophole” in state gun laws allows gun owners to easily purchase, and legally own, hundreds of firearms.

“Fewer households own guns, but ownership has become more concentrated,” Shoebridge said. “It is inevitable that some of these private arsenals with end up in the hands of criminals. If this trend is allowed to continue NSW will have over one million registered guns within another two years.”

The Greens want gun owners with more than five guns to have to go through a seperate process for buying an extra firearms, to limit the spread of large arsenals.

The party has also launched a website called Too Many Guns that maps gun ownership rates across the state.

Feature image via Antonio Villaraigosa/Flickr