- Mar 22, 2004
It sounds like their laws are similar to more relaxed states here. And since the shooter was a foreigner,. it makes you wonder why the country as a whole has very little gun crime yet has easy access to guns?Apparently it's pretty easy to legally own a gun in NZ- even non-citizens can be licensed in some cases:
New Zealand's Ardern says gun laws will change- But what are they currently?
All gun-owners must obtain a license but most individual weapons don't have to be registered, making New Zealand one of the few countries in the world to allow this.
The minimum legal age to own firearm is 16 or 18 for military-style semi-automatic weapons (MSSA). Anyone over those ages who is considered by New Zealand Police to be "fit and proper" can, in turn, own a gun without registering it specifically.
An applicant for a firearm licence still must pass a background check which considers criminal, mental health, medical, addiction and domestic violence records.
Once approved, the license is issued for 10 years, but can be revoked at any time if police believe the person is a threat to be in possession of a firearm. Visitors to New Zealand can apply from overseas for a 1-year visitor's licence based on their existing licence in their country of residence.
It remains more likely than not that an applicant will be approved for the license. In 2017 43,509 people applied for firearms licences, and 43,321 were granted.
And why would Ardern think that gun laws will stop the next one? Murder is already illegal.....