A MAN who lives in one of America's most violent cities has spoken out against any ban on replica guns.
Dr Gazi George - a former Iraqi scientist married to a Huddersfield woman - believes police appeals for a ban would not ease crime problems.
He lives in Detroit with his wife Linda who carries a gun in her bag because of the fear of crime on the streets.
But Dr George was not impressed by news that police in Huddersfield have urged tough restrictions on the sale of replica weapons, in the wake of sharp rise in gun incidents.
Dr George, a former scientist for Saddam Hussein, said: "I visited Huddersfield in the summer and was surprised with the increase in crime rates especially violence against the elderly, gang related violence and some robberies that involved guns.
"Having lived in one of the most violent cities in the US, I can tell you that prohibiting guns and even their corresponding replicas will not work.
"Many States in America tried that and they met failure to the extent that there is an opposite move now to allow citizens to carry licensed, concealed weapons!
"Contrary to popular perception, most gun death in America is not crime related.
Most firearm deaths stem not from homicide (14,327 in 1996) but suicide (18,166 in 1996).
"Gun and replica bans simply mean that law-abiding citizens cannot own a shotgun, even for hunting or skeet (clay-pigeon) shooting but criminals will.
"These bans have not worked in crime-infested States like California, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and the District of Colombia.
Dr George said that Washington DC was the highest in the country despite a total ban on handguns and even replicas.
"No matter how many laws are passed, no matter how many regulations, precautions, mechanical gadgets and background checks you push, you will never stop a determined criminal," he added.
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