SHOPS selling knives to teenagers have been warned that the authorities are out to get them.
Alarming research has shown that up to one in three shops would break the law and sell knives to 14-year-olds.
Exasperated police chiefs are determined to crack down on rising crime involving knives.
So they have turned to West Yorkshire Trading Standards experts for help to catch the shops out and then prosecute them.
Trading standards officials have said they will send children to try to buy knives and catch out the lawbreaking shops.
Anyone caught selling knives and other bladed instruments to children under 16 can be jailed for six months and face a fine up to £5,000.
Graham Hebblethwaite, chief officer for West Yorkshire Joint Services, which runs trading standards, said: "It is imperative that it is as difficult as possible for young people to obtain these weapons.
"The problem is now so serious that the police have asked for our help in carrying out test buying operations.
"The proposed measures would help combat violence, anti-social behaviour and could potentially save lives."
Knife crime in West Yorkshire is increasing.
In the year ending last June knives were used in 2,037 offences, ranging from murder to harassment.
In many of the cases the knives were used to threaten victims rather than actually harm them.
During a five-week nationwide knife amnesty in May and June 1,413 knives were surrendered at West Yorkshire police stations with no questions asked.
About 300 were handed in at police stations in Kirklees.
During the amnesty there was a high- profile stabbing in Huddersfield.
Shaun Forde, 35, died at his home in Gilbert Grove, Crosland Moor, from a stab wound on Saturday, June 3.
Huddersfield man Jermaine Coore, 26, has been charged with murder and is in custody awaiting trial.
Trading standards figures indicate that nationally 29% of retailers are prepared to sell knives to 14- year-olds.
It is an offence to sell knives, knife blades, razor blades, axes, bladed or sharply-pointed articles to children under 16.
Mr Hebblethwaite added: "Our officers already enforce age-restricted sales legislation on alcohol, fireworks, lottery tickets, cigarettes, aerosol paint, lighter fuel and intoxicating substances.
"They have considerable experience in both using children to try test purchases and the beginning of court proceedings after an under-age sales occurs."
He added: "The danger of death or serious injury is present every time a young person chooses to carry a knife."