The demand for gun-control is higher than ever in the wake of one of the deadliest massacres in United States history. Many legislators are citing nations like Australia and the United Kingdom for their “proactive” stance on gun-control. Sadly, those same legislators have ignored a recent report that shows thousands of Australians are using the dark web to purchase firearms and explosives.
RAND Europe, an independent non-profit research institute, released a study that showed Australians are buying and selling weapons and instruction manuals to build weapons and explosives by the thousands. RAND’s investigation shows that 12 primary “crypto markets” carry more than 167,000 different illegal products.
The study, which was reported in late 2017 by the Daily Telegraph, found that most of the weapons originated in the United States, but the “overwhelming majority of listings” were offered worldwide shipping.
The majority of sellers came from locations in Europe, Canada, USA, Asia, and South America. Handguns can be purchased for as low as $170 while sub-machine guns were sold for less than $2,000.
To avoid detection, sellers frequently will disassemble the weapon and ship the pieces in separate packages through different shipping services. The Daily Mail reports some weapons were found hidden inside large devices like televisions and printers.
Criminal customers could also purchase instruction manuals to make explosives or build firearms with a 3D printer. “While guides and manuals on how to make bombs are home were illegally circulating on the web well before the establishment of cryptomarkets, the level of accessibility provided by these platforms represents reason for high concern among policy makers and practitioners,” the RAND report concluded.
Do you think the results would be any different here if absolute gun-control came to pass?