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Last Updated: Friday, 2 March 2007, 18:38 GMT
Row over shop's fashion gun vest
Imitation bullet-proof vest - photo supplied by MEN Syndication
Police have said it is not illegal to sell the vests
A clothes shop in Manchester has been criticised by an anti-gun campaign group for selling imitation bullet proof vests as fashion accessories.

Angela Lawrence, from Mothers Against Violence (MAV), condemned the owner of Jean Image for selling the items, saying they glamorised violence.

Store owner Tash Chadda, 25, has denied he is popularising violence at his shop on Bury New Road, in Strangeways.

A police spokesman has said selling the vests was irresponsible, not illegal.

Devastating impact

Ch Supt Dave Keller, from Greater Manchester Police, said: "I find it irresponsible that clothing like this has been made.

"We are working extremely hard to combat gun crime in Greater Manchester and these items just glorify a crime that is having a devastating impact on local communities and destroying people's lives."

Shop owner Mr Chadda added: "We are a family business and have been operating for the last 32 years. This is the first complaint we have had against us in all that time.

"We sell all kinds of T-shirts, some of which have guns on the front and others that promote peace."

The store also sells a range of balaclavas and T-shirts bearing the names of US rappers who are frequently criticised for glorifying violence.

The imitation bullet-proof vests are sold for about 20.

On Thursday police raided more than 170 properties in Manchester as part of an ongoing crackdown on gun crime.

Last month two teenagers and a man suffered gunshot wounds in separate shootings in Manchester.


SEE ALSO
Eight held in gun crime operation
01 Mar 07 |  Manchester
Guns given up for peace campaign
29 Mar 06 |  Manchester



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