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Last Updated: Wednesday June 08 2005 06:44 GMT

Schools could search for weapons

Replica guns alongside real ones
Teachers will be given the power to search pupils for weapons as part of new plans from the government.

They're also hoping to ban people from owning fake guns called replicas that look exactly like the real thing, and are sometimes used by criminals.

Some replica guns can fire blank bullets, but others can be converted so they can fire real bullets instead.

The Violent Crime Reduction Bill will also mean people have to be 18 instead of 16 to buy knives.

Before the general election in May the government said more needed doing to stop violent crime, and said they'd reduce all crime by 15% by 2008.

Last year the use of replica guns in violent crime rose 66%, although knives are still the weapons most often used in violent crime.

Some people are worried that the new law could even make it illegal to play with water pistols, but the law has been written so this won't happen.

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