Nine arrested for illegal possession of firearms

Provincial Police Commander Chief Inspector Daniel Yangen said police confiscated an M16A2 rifle, live ammunition and PNG police and defense force uniforms.

Chief Inspector Yangen said the suspects were arrested on July 20 and charged with two counts each, under Section 7 and Section 65A of the Firearms Act and two counts each under section 16 of the Summary Offenses Act.

PPC Yangen said the suspects, aged between 19 and 45, are from Nipa Kutubu and Mendi Munihu districts.

According to a police file, it was alleged that members of the Police Mobile Squad and the PNG Defense Force were patrolling along the Mendi-Nipa road when they came across a suspicious vehicle (Toyota Land Cruiser, white 10 seater) .

Security personnel intercepted the vehicle at Megi Hill and searched it. They found the high-powered M16A2 rifle with a fully loaded magazine and seven additional 5.56mm rounds, a police uniform and a PNG Defense Force camouflage uniform in the vehicle.
The suspects were brought to Mendi, charged and locked up.

PPC Yangen added that according to the serial number of the M16A2, it is a firearm issued by PNGDF.

He said the suspects were remanded to Bui-Yebi Prison in Mendi and then transferred to Baisu Correctional Services in Western Highlands Province. The suspects will appear in court today.

PPC Yangen commended members of the security forces for a job well done in confiscating the high-powered firearm.

“We have more to do and the first part has been completed. We are in the middle of the operations to secure the elections and by the end of this month, we should complete this operation. All members of the disciplinary forces work well and I hope they keep the same spirit.

“We are working tirelessly to ensure that law and order prevails in the province. We did the poll peacefully and we also expect the same result during the counting and reporting periods,” PPC Yangen said.

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