Is it necessary

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Brough

Well-Known Member
Dear all,
Is it a legal requirement to complete the dsc courses. If I was to find myself some nice person to mentor me ,would this be acceptable in the eyes of the law regarding the eventual application for a firearm.
I just think and its only my opinion that I would benefit from a long term tutoring compared to trying to squish it all in a week .
 

User00004

Distinguished Member
It's not a legal requirment but lots of FLO's are putting conditions on tickets requiring DSC to be taken by ticket holders, they are also putting down that persons can only stalk while being mentored. Best thing to do is talk to your licencing office.

There is lots of info regarding this stuff in the Legal Section on this forum. Her is one of the biggest discussions.

http://www.thestalkingdirectory.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=819

Contact Swampy direct via PM, he is "On the ball" with this stuff.

Cheers

TJ
 

Rangefinder

Well-Known Member
Brough

TJ is right. There is no legal requirement for you to complete the DSC 1 course before a firearms certificate is granted.

There is also no legal requirement for you to be mentored.

These are facts in law.

Therefore a FEO cannot, even when acting as an agent for the Chief Con have these unlawful restrictions imposed on you firearm certificate.

Join BASC/NGO/BDS and speak with them for advice, they will know a good lawyer.

RF
 

snowstorm

Well-Known Member
I read, in the last BASC mag I think, that the Chief of Police can only issue a FAC if they are satisfied you are safe.

By imposing conditions, they are in effect saying you are not safe and need to be supervised.

So if you have a FAC it cannot have restrictive conditions otherwise it has been issued under the premise that in some cases you are not safe.

And yet, FACs still have such conditions attached.
 

Rangefinder

Well-Known Member
Snowstorm

You are correct however "conditions" cannot be challenged but it is interesting to note the "creep" from a "normal" issue certificate of named land so as to restrict the indivdual and so they can get experience and then move to an "open" ticket to what we have today in some areas. Whilst you can argue "for" anything, I would ask to see where the imperical evidence is to suggest there is a need for such draconian illegal restrictions? The simple fact is there isnt any to support their arguement but we in our ignorance have set a very dangerous precent by accepting such BS.

Of course, what has yet to be explored in a court, is the issue of an individual being a mentor when a "novice" makes an error [sufficient in magnitude to involve the police] I wonder what the police would say then? or indeed do? I suspect there might be a duty of care issue on part of the mentor, could he be held liable? Who knows?

As it has not happened yet [to my knowledge] it is untested and NO one can say either way with any realistic certainty/evidence what the outcome would be however to provide an example of my experience of this albeit a slightly different set of circumstances. On one occassion when pressed, the police wanted us to turn out with rifles to despatch RTA's. We asked for immunity or protection under the law if we shot a beast that had crawled onto private land following an RTA, this was at their [police] behest as to do so would be clearly breaking the law had we not obtained permission first.

It never came, so be aware if the friendly boby says just shoot it mate... be warned the next sentence might start with "Iam arresting you....."

Would this ever happen? I don't know but I sure aint gonna test it to see.

As they say in the procurement world.... Caveat Emptor!!
 

snowstorm

Well-Known Member
Rangefinder said:
Snowstorm

You are correct however "conditions" cannot be challenged but it is interesting to note the "creep" from a "normal" issue certificate of named land so as to restrict the indivdual and so they can get experience and then move to an "open" ticket to what we have today in some areas. Whilst you can argue "for" anything, I would ask to see where the imperical evidence is to suggest there is a need for such draconian illegal restrictions? The simple fact is there isnt any to support their arguement but we in our ignorance have set a very dangerous precent by accepting such BS.

Quite right, and with no formal/independent appeal mechanism you are left with nothing more than direct appeals to people who made the decision in the first place, or getting one of the shooter orgs to get involved on a case by case basis.

It doesn't affect me, but it's looking harder and harder for people to get a FAC from scratch. I really have sympathy for them.

Interesting to note they dangled getting DSC in front of me at my interview, and if I'd blinked then it would have been a condition, but I knew that one was coming. I just said 'gimme', it's costing me money not to have one', and they did. :)
 

Max

Well-Known Member
Rangefinder

Just aside of the DSC for a moment.

As you seem well up on the legal issues I would value your and others opinions.

Like a lot of people on this site I attend RTA's and have done for 10 years or more.
I have been asked by the police to enter land without the owners permission to find and disspatch an injured deer.
I have always refussed unless the police get that permission for me there and then, otherwise I belive I could be prosecuted for armed trespass.
I know it would probably be an extreme case but I dont wish to be that one or even test it.

Also I will not attend an RTA without a police presance as I belive it is an offence to disscharge a firearm/shotgun within 50m of a public highway.
The police refer to this as a GREY area but I am not up for testing it in court either

Max
 

User00004

Distinguished Member
Max said:
I have been asked by the police to enter land without the owners permission to find and disspatch an injured deer.
I have always refussed unless the police get that permission for me there and then, otherwise I belive I could be prosecuted for armed trespass.

Your right, you can still get prosecuted, the police are not the "LAW" and therefor can't re-write it, they enforce the law.

Max said:
Also I will not attend an RTA without a police presance as I belive it is an offence to disscharge a firearm/shotgun within 50m of a public highway.
Max

Only if it causes nusence/disturbance to others (I also think that only stands for a Centrefire rifle) I believe you can discharge a shotgun legaly though. I also believe it's it's 50m from the centre of the highway.

That's how I have interpreted the law, if I'm wrong, I'm sure I will be corrcted.

Cheers

TJ
 

remmy7

Well-Known Member
In response to the query from Max I may be wrong but I seem to recall that the permission or instruction to do so has to come from the Chief Constable in writing. If this is the case then obviously this is not practical. I myself had to shy away from a similar situation some twenty years ago when I was requested to do so by the Duty Sergeant who was the most senior person on duty within the division on the day in question. To avoid a similar situation arising I never put myself in the position again and indeed in this Region The Police only use the nearest Vet to dispatch an animal.

Remmy7
 

griff

Well-Known Member
Just a thought!
If you had no intention of shooting deer the FLO could not insist on dsc1, but would you be able to own a large calibre rifle for anything other than punching holes in paper?

griff
 

Rangefinder

Well-Known Member
Max / TJ your both correct in your assertions.

The deal is not to put yourselves in a position that breaks the law and entering land to kill / despatch deer is an offence in law if you do not have the landowners permission or [if you really want to get all legal eagle] the person who has the shooting rights as they need not necessisarily be the same person.

Armed trespass in the pursuit of game is I believe a criminal offence that carrys a potential three year imprisonment as punishment.

Wrt [with respect to] attendance of an RTA without police support being present you may wish to consider the potential for claims or responding to allegations from "do gooders" or anti's.

They could include such things as you were reckless or negligent or incompetent or risked human life or cruelty - the RSPCA are well versed in bringing private prosecutions where the police won't. Remember you have an obligation under the law to dispatch a wounded animal as humanely as possible.

Just be careful out there, be safe, know your limits and remember to follow good practice and you should be ok.

RF
 

snowstorm

Well-Known Member
Depends on where you are.

In Scotland, the Deer Act says you can enter private land with a firearm to kill a wounded deer without permission. However, you must inform the landowner afterwards and the carcass is not yours to keep - even if you shot it on yur land in the first place. That element gets discussed regularly on the forum and a search should throw it up.

Regarding a vet doing the deed for the police - is a vet with a gun/syringe any different in law to a stalker re: killing deer?

Not sure what the law is in England?

The relevant part is :

17 Unlawful killing, taking and injuring of deer
(1) Subject to section 25 of this Act, any person who, without legal right to take or kill deer or without permission from a person having such right, takes or wilfully kills or injures deer on any land shall be guilty of an offence.
(2) Subject to section 25 of this Act, any person who, without legal right to take or kill deer on any land or without permission from a person having such right, removes any deer carcase from that land shall be guilty of an offence.

-- but then Section 25 says --

Exemption for certain acts

25 Action intended to prevent suffering
A person shall not be guilty of an offence against this Act or any order made under this Act in respect of any act done for the purpose of preventing suffering by—
(a) an injured or diseased deer; or
(b) by any deer calf, fawn or kid deprived, or about to be deprived, of its mother.

25a) means if you shoot a deer on your land and it runs over a boundary, or come across an injured deer then you can do the deed where ever the animal is. However, the carvcass remains the property of whoever's land it dies on.

S.
 

IanF

Well-Known Member
Max said:
Also I will not attend an RTA without a police presance as I belive it is an offence to disscharge a firearm/shotgun within 50m of a public highway.
Max

"Only if it causes nusence/disturbance to others (I also think that only stands for a Centrefire rifle) I believe you can discharge a shotgun legaly though. I also believe it's it's 50m from the centre of the highway.

That's how I have interpreted the law, if I'm wrong, I'm sure I will be corrcted." TJ


>>>>It's actually only 50 feet from the centre of a highway which consisted or comprises a carriageway!

Thats a little over 15metres to you Imperially challenged folk, and refers to a road to which the public have a right of passage of vehicles! It does not refer to a bridleway or footpath.

rgds Ian :)
 

paul k

Well-Known Member
Interesting debate.

To add my two pennorth.

I had an "off the record" conversation with my FLO in which he said that it would be very unlikely that the CPS would wish to prosecute any breach of Chief Constables conditions on any FAC as they were not strictly breaking the law. The conversation was in the context of shooting a fox with a rifle that was only cleared for deer. He did however agree that the next renewal application might be a bit more problematic!

A friend of mine recently had his FAC renewal back with restrictions on using his moderated weapons on a club range and the suggestion that by zeroing on a club range where he was only cleared for "target shooting" he was in breach of the conditions on the FAC. Conversations with the issuing officer failed to resolve what seemed to be a stupid situation.

This in effect meant that he could only zero on land cleared for that purpose but if he went to a range the mod had to come off which of course changed the point of aim. He called the BASC who told him that it was nonsense and gave him a more senior officer in that force to talk to.

They immediately agreed that the first wording was nonsense and re-issued the FAC with no restrictions on use of moderators and permission to zero on a range.

I think the point made by Griff with regard to DSC is a good one in that if you were using a deer calibre like .243 for foxes there would be no suggestion of needing any certification so why would the fact that deer are the target make any difference.

In terms of getting an FAC there is no requirement or even suggestion in the Home Office guidelines that DSC or any other qualification is a requirement nor is mentoring mentioned. These are attempts by Chief Constables to control and restrict the use of rifles and should be resisted.
 

Brough

Well-Known Member
Dear All
Thanks for all the replys regarding my initial post .
I am taking the first step and have booked a days course for an introduction to sporting rifles next Tuesday week. The Hampshire deer center who have been very helpful will then take me through the whole process including Fac application and supply permission for stalking ,obviously at a cost ,I will then at the same time take the dsc 1 .
Already dreaming about a 6.5x55 any one got one.Thanks B
 
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