Straw purchasing in particular is of growing concern. This is when individuals with little to no criminal history obtain a firearms licence and purchase weapons legally to sell or give to the criminal market. Often, family or girlfriends of offenders are used as straw purchasers.
When it comes to theft, firearms are stolen from residences, vehicles and, in some cases, gun ranges or arms dealers. They are then introduced to the black market. Theft is particularly an issue in rural areas, where there are a high number of long guns.
Fraud occurs when offenders create fake identification and Possession and Acquisition Licenses (PALs) and purchase firearms from licensed firearms dealers.
Smuggling often means firearms are brought up illegally from the United States, where regulations are more relaxed. Offenders then bring them into Canada to sell within the black market.
An emerging trend is manufacturing, surrounding 3D-printed firearms and firearms parts. They can be used by the individuals producing them, or sold illegally.
Report a crime
The work we do is about our communities, and that’s why we recognize that residents can be instrumental in tackling serious crime. If you or someone you know has been the victim of a crime, or you suspect criminal activity, please reach out. Your information will remain strictly confidential.
Thank you for helping to make Alberta safer by being actively involved and reporting suspicious activity.