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Thursday, 20 June, 2002, 14:51 GMT 15:51 UK
Crackdown on 'disguised' knives
Comb knife
A "comb" hides a potentially lethal weapon
Stiffer penalties are being brought in in Scotland to crack down on knives disguised as combs and lipstick containers.

Justice Minister Jim Wallace plans to amend legislation to make it an offence to sell such disguised weapons.

He said the move would improve airline security in particular, an important consideration after the 11 September terrorist attacks.


The design of disguised knives... deliberately designed to look like innocent everyday items, prevents ready detection by airport x-ray scanners

Jim Wallace

The penalty for carrying such weapons will be a six-month prison sentence or a substantial fine.

Mr Wallace said it was important to close the loophole which permitted the carrying of disguised weapons.

"A large number of these weapons are easily available, serving no legitimate purpose and it is clearly undesirable that they are readily available for people to buy," he said.

Lipstick knife
Lipsticks can prove deadly too

"Public safety is of the utmost importance."

The minister said the ban would improve safety at nightclubs and football grounds.

"The design of disguised knives, which are bladed or sharply pointed weapons deliberately designed to look like innocent everyday items, prevents ready detection by airport x-ray scanners," he added.

An equivalent amendment to legislation is being laid down by the UK Government for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

See also:

11 Apr 02 | Americas
07 Jun 00 | Scotland
21 Feb 00 | Scotland
05 Feb 00 | Scotland
Internet links:


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