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Express & Star victory in deadly knives campaign

By Alex Ross | Crime | Published:

A loophole allowing the sale of deadly knifes on the high street is to be looked into by Government ministers as a result of an Express & Star investigation.

A legally purchased long-reach machete, which an Express & Star reporter bought on the high street

Crime Minister Victoria Atkins has launched the inquiry after images of blades purchased legally in Wolverhampton by this title were sent to her.

The blades, although similar to the banned zombie knives, can be sold because they do not feature images or words which suggest violence.

But they can be just as lethal, and purchased for under £20 from shops in the Black Country.

A petition run by this title for a review into legislation on the sale of knives has been signed by almost 6,000 people.

In a letter to West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson, Ms Atkins said: "The definition of zombie knives identifies the most common characteristics of these knives and what distinguishes them from other knives and makes them particularly harmful.

"We considered the criteria needed to describe an item as a zombie knife very carefully and if we wanted to remove the third element of the definition, that the weapon includes images or words that suggest it is to be used for the purposes of violence, we would be capturing a much wider range of knives.

"However, I am concerned by the images you have provided and I have asked my officials to consider this issue further."

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Mr Jamieson, who has backed this title's campaign, said: "I am pleased the Home Office are taking this issue seriously and are looking closely at my proposals.

"These knives have no practical use. The only purpose they have is to injure and kill.

"They should be banned from sale. I look forward to working closely with the Home Office to get these loopholes closed."

He added: "I am proud of having led the campaign with the Express and Star to get zombie knives banned.

"I am determined that these loopholes should be cracked down on too.

"The spirit of the law should be upheld."

Alex Ross

By Alex Ross
Investigations Editor - @alexross_star

Investigations Editor at the Express & Star. Everyone has a story - tell me yours.

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