Welcome To P8ntballer.com
The Home Of European Paintball
Sign Up & Join In

Paintball and the law

H

Wizard, of sorts...
Feb 27, 2002
2,765
450
118
Nottingham, England
www.ministryofcake.net
I've been trying to mooch the law a bit without much joy. I looked through the firearms and air weapons law and there was no mention of paintball or frangible rounds being a factor in the definition of a firearm. Can anyone shed any light on how this stuff is formally defined?
 

Tom

Tom
Nov 27, 2006
3,931
1,161
198
Salisbury
www.TaskForceDelta.co.uk
I've been trying to mooch the law a bit without much joy. I looked through the firearms and air weapons law and there was no mention of paintball or frangible rounds being a factor in the definition of a firearm. Can anyone shed any light on how this stuff is formally defined?
Start here
http://ukpsf.com/paintball-and-the-law/

There are numerous parts of legislation which can apply to paintball, lethality is an element in legislation which can then be measured against frangibility
 

H

Wizard, of sorts...
Feb 27, 2002
2,765
450
118
Nottingham, England
www.ministryofcake.net
Start here
http://ukpsf.com/paintball-and-the-law/

There are numerous parts of legislation which can apply to paintball, lethality is an element in legislation which can then be measured against frangibility
Yeah I've already seen that page, and the text that's been copied all over the interwebs.

I'm more interested in the literal letter of law where this area may be covered
 

Canon Fodder

Go to your brother, kill him with your gun.
Oct 28, 2008
1,442
494
108
Lancaster
@H there isn't really much in the wording of the acts that specifically excludes paintball markers, I beleive that the idea of fragmentable projectiles may have originally stemmed from a court case where it was decided that paintball markers were not air guns because they fired a fragmentable projectile, and since they fired a fragmentable projectile they were therefore not especially dangerous since the energy is dispersed on impact rather than penatrating or causing excessive trauma to the body.

Although I've not read up on the case I suspect the original grounds for procescution may have had its roots in the fact that at the time markers were generally powered by CO2 and at the time CO2 powered air weapons counted as firearms (later reclassified as air weapons after the review of the classification of various guns following Dunblane), So the objective of the defence was to establish that a paintball marker was not a weapon of any kind, the only way they could do this was to prove that the projectile didn't present a danger.

UKPSF have since sought clarification from the home office and the bit on their page is the response they got.

Or I could be talking out of my hat.


Found a bit more, the CPS guidence claims that the home office does consider that paintball markers are air weapons, but does not clarify the source of this belief:

http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/d_to_g/firearms/
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: H

Tom

Tom
Nov 27, 2006
3,931
1,161
198
Salisbury
www.TaskForceDelta.co.uk
The co2/air element was the issue that Scotland originaly saw paintball guns as illegal firearms as they were co2 powered and could not be a legal airgun, in England the precise word of the law was disregarded and the principle accepted that co2 was allowable
Case law legitimised co2

As earlier mentioned there is so much gun related legislation that in certain circumstances contradicts each other with all the different precidents and case law, this will be subject to a review
What comes out of that won't be known, but more clarity will be a good thing
 
  • Like
Reactions: H

Tom

Tom
Nov 27, 2006
3,931
1,161
198
Salisbury
www.TaskForceDelta.co.uk
It often gets said that UKPSF don't interpret the law but the home office do

This isn't entirely true - everyone interprets the law
The UKPSF are recognized by the home office and are listened to
What realy matters that the home office does is they produce the guidance on interpreation of the law and provide that to the police

In practicality it depends on how an individual interprets (or doesn't) and how they act, how bystanders interpret a situation and whether they report it
(Or a problem occurs such as injury)
The police turn up and the officer on the ground interprets. Watch evening tv and see how they have to interpret and judge every day situations - usually it's how far a drink pushes it
The officer may refer to the station or a specialist colleague
If it gets to the station and custody then the custody sgt has an opportunity on how to deal with it
The police decide if they want to pursue
The cps decides if it's worth pursuing
Lawyers get in and make their interpreations with two different agendas, they use law and past cases and argue that the same applies or this case is different
The judge / jury interpret - with a judge advising a jury on their powers in the case

A lot of people have now interpreted one incident
 
  • Like
Reactions: H

Sirdogbert1

Member
Apr 24, 2011
29
0
11
I haven't read all the posts, just tried to get a general gist, so I'll apologise in advance if I'm slightly off topic or missed the point, i don't really use forums that much.
I don't know about you but there are a lot of firearm certificates out there to me. 151,413 firearm certificates on issue at the end of March 2014 -link-
Personally I think if they did regulate paintball markers, it would be closer to the shotgun licencing of which there were 582,923 shotgun certificates on issue at the end of March 2014.

I know a few shotgun licence holders and I basically treat my paintball Marker in a similar manor, I.E. only carry it on me or in car with a purpose (going paintballing / cleaning etc), I'm personally reluctant to fire it in my back garden.
I wouldn't have a big problem with them licencing it as it appears to be in some locations, and then at least it is defined.

I am a member of a few re-enactment group's (Roman, Medieval, mainly) so I also own various swords, spears etc. these aren't licensed either but as I think Dusty put it, just don't go waving it about and it should be all good.

I am assuming in places that it is licensed it's not particularly difficult to get a licence?
 

snips

Active Member
Feb 25, 2015
78
17
28
29
Getting a firearm certificate in the uk for air rifles above 12ftlbs and rim fire/center fire ammunition is a right pain. You have the expense of gun cabinets as well as possibly fortifying the house with bolts on doors and windows as well as proof of where you would use the registered firearm. It's unnecessary legislation for a paintball marker especially if it follows the same criteria as firearms.
Shotgun certs are slightly easier to come by but wouldn't come under the same umbrella in my opinion as shotguns are scatter ammunition where as a paintball is one solid piece.
 

Sirdogbert1

Member
Apr 24, 2011
29
0
11
Shotguns are scatter but shotguns clasifications talk about them being a smooth bore weapon, and not rifeled.
A musket, which is used by some re-enactment friends again for American civil war, is classified as a shotgun as it is a smooth bore weapon.
But where i see the difference is, that the above only shoot 1 or 2 rounds before reload that I think is part of the clasification and they also have a longer barrel.