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New high-powered police guns “seem unnecessary”

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Liberty Victoria says it’s concerned by the “silence” surrounding the dramatic increase in Victoria Police’s firepower.

But the Police Association says the new guns are overdue.

Eight hundred semi-automatic rifles will be issued to specialist officers to help in the fight against terrorism and other critical incidents.

The 5.56mm calibre rifles can carry up to 30 rounds and shoot with accuracy over hundreds of metres.

Jessie Taylor said the guns “seemed unnecessary”.

“It’s really concerning to me that the police won’t talk to you (Neil Mitchell) about it because while I absolutely accept that the police need to be properly equipped with firearms to do their duty and carry out what the community expects of them – this seems to be something way out of the blue,” she said.

Click PLAY below to hear Jessie voice her concerns

But Wayne Gatt said police needed them as criminals continued to get their hands on bigger and more powerful weapons.

“We’ve needed them for some time,” he said.

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