Nicholas Taylor has recently provided Pistol NZ a Legal Opinion on the interpretation of security requirements and its not inline with current police policy.
The key-points Nicholas makes are:
Conclusions/Summary in regards to security for pistols, restricted weapons and MSSA’s
1.) An engineer’s certificate in regards to a safe is not a legal requirement.
2.) A safe does not need to be made of 6 mm steel or any particular thickness at all; it needs to be “sound”.
3.) A safe or steel cabinet needs to be objectively of sound construction”.
4.) It does not need to have 5 lever locks (this is not specified in law).
5.) Any member of police (eg. a local constable) can approve an individual safe (or generally). They can not refuse this request as it would be a breach of statutory duty. It does not have to be a Police Arms Officer,
6.) The Police cannot refuse to issue/renew a firearms licence or endorsement on the basis that they believe that a safe or steel cabinet is not up to their defined standard – only ifyou are not a fit and proper person.
7.) The word “in a particular case” used in regulation 28 (c) means an assessment made on a case-by-case basis (ie. each steel safe or cabinet~is inspected as to its “soundness” and cannot be bound by any particular policy.
8.) The police are placing all the emphasis on the requirements for the word “generally” in regulation 28, which still needs to be reasonable and have both a factual and logical basis.
Other considerations on “A Category” or standard firearms
1.) There is no lawful mechanism or lawful right for the police to inspect your “A category” firearms or storage at all at any time.
2.) It is a condition of your licence that you must, as a fit and proper person, comply with the security provisions outlined (Regulation 19). Regulation 29 does not apply to “A category firearms. There is no such thing legally as the police “doing an audit” or “doing a security inspection for renewal of a firearms licence” at all.
3.) No police approval is required for “A category” security at all, and so they do not have the legal ability to prescribe what is or is not acceptable under the Act.
4.) The police have no legal right to photograph your guns or security at any time during an “inspection” or licence renewal process at all, only upon the execution of a valid search warrant or warrant less search under the Search and Surveillance Act 2012. lf they say that they are going to do this or ask to do this then ask them this question “under which statutory enactment are you requiring me to do that?”
5.) The police have no legal right to record serial numbers and details of standard (“A category”) firearms.
6.) If this has already been done to you, write immediately to them asking for all photos and records taken to be destroyed in 7 days.
If they do not comply then file a complaint with the Privacy Commissioner and the IPCA. They have no lawful right, or mechanism, to keep this information.
We recommend you read the document opinion drafted by Nicholas Taylor. It is only 4 pages long. It would also be worthwhile printing a copy and keeping it in your safe.