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Question Status:  Answered

Session: 59 Parliament First Session Sitting: 2020 House: LC
QP Reference No: NP 56 Question Number: 1864

Asked By: Hayes Clifford Party: Sustainable Australia Addressed To: Police and Emergency Services
Asked Date: Mar 17, 2020

Question Preview:

MR HAYES — To ask the Minister for Training and Skills (for the Minister for Police and Emergency Services): In relation to section 131(1) of the Firearms Act 1996, which prohibits shooters from trespassing on private property or negligently discharging a firearm on or across private property:
(1) What steps have been taken to protect property owners and members of the public from physical, psychological or auditory injury.
(2) What steps are taken to enforce section 131(1) of the Firearms Act 1996 and what prosecutions, if any, have resulted from breaches of the Act.
(3) Has a risk assessment ever been carried out on the risks that hunting poses to both property owners and the public.

The fundamental purpose of the Firearms Act 1996 is that the possession of firearms is conditional on the need to ensure public safety and peace. 

Firearms owners must be registered with Victoria Police, and a Permit to Acquire as well as an appropriate firearms licence is required to purchase, possess, carry and use firearms in Victoria. The Licensing and Regulation Division of Victoria Police scrutinises all applications and renewals for a firearms licence and will only grant a licence to those who meet stringent criteria. 

There are a number of offences in place to reduce the risks associated with firearm carriage, use and possession. It is an offence to possess, carry or use a firearm on private property without consent of the property owner. It is also an offence to use a firearm in a dangerous manner as provided in section 129 of the Firearms Act 1996.

Victoria Police encourages the public to contact local police if they have concerns about shooting activity in their area or on their property and call Triple Zero ‘000' in an emergency. 

Victoria Police regularly prosecutes firearms offences and investigates alleged breaches in a range of circumstances. Divisional firearms officers are deployed in each region and have the technical and regulatory knowledge to effectively enforce the Firearms Act 1996 in their local area. 

In 2019, there were a total of 4,712 firearm offences recorded. Of those offences, 3,468 were firearm related offences and the remaining 1,244 offences were ammunition related.

Of the 3,468 firearm offences, 12 were related to using a firearm on private property without consent, 3 were related to carrying a firearm on private property without consent, and 6 were related to possessing a firearm on private property without consent.  

Further, related offences include:

  • Carry/use a firearm in a dangerous manner (4)
  • Possess loaded firearm in a public place (48)
  • Carry a loaded firearm in a public place (29)
  • Use a firearm in a public place (35)
  • Use a firearm with reckless disregard in other place (4)
  •  Failure to comply with licence conditions (Category A, B and E longarms) (15)


The government is constantly considering the risk firearms use poses to the community, and through state and national firearms user groups, promote safety and compliance with the law whilst respecting the legitimate activities of licenced firearms users. 

Answer Published Date: