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“You don’t need any special training”: Why AK-47s are turning up in Melbourne

Australia’s Border Force Commissioner says he’s not surprised the Russian-made AK-47 military style assault rifle is turning up in Melbourne.

The latest was found yesterday in a raid in Oakleigh South, the second seizure in a week.

Former Commissioner Roman Quaedvlieg told Neil Mitchell there could up to a thousand rifles in Australia, many of them in the hands of collectors.

“They were originally built in the Soviet Union in the late 40s, over time there’s been about 100 million or so manufactured in the global market,” Mr Quaedvlieg said.

“They’re a very durable weapon, they’re very robust, they’re simple to use and don’t perish easily, so they stay in existence for a long time.

“In the 50s and 60s it was quite easy to get them into the country.

“They’re also a collector’s item around the world.

“You can punch out several hundred rounds a minute, they’re a scary weapon.

“You don’t need any special training, you can pick one up and be firing it in 20 minutes.”

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Mr Quaedvlieg estimated the number of AK-47s in Australia could run into the thousands.

“Even as a gun collector, why should we have these coming into the country, even for a gun collector,” Neil said.

“Why? When it seems to be creating an unnecessary risk.”