Section 51B of the Firearms Act 1996 is Supplying Firearms on an Ongoing Basis and is extracted below.
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(1) Offence A person must not contravene section 51 on 3 or more separate occasions over any consecutive period of 12 months.
Maximum penalty: imprisonment for 20 years.
(2) Jury must be satisfied as to same 3 occasions of supply If, on the trial of a person for an offence under this section, more than 3 occasions of supplying a firearm are relied on as evidence of commission of the offence, all the members of the jury must be satisfied as to the same 3 occasions in order to find the person guilty of the offence.
(3) Alternative verdict–relevant supply offence If, on the trial of a person for an offence under this section, the jury is not satisfied that the offence is proven but is satisfied that the person has, in respect of any of the occasions relied on as evidence of commission of the offence under this section, committed a relevant supply offence, the jury may acquit the person of the offence charged and find the person guilty of the relevant supply offence, and the person is liable to punishment accordingly.
(4) Double jeopardy provisions A person who has been convicted of an offence under this section is not liable to be convicted:
(a) of a relevant supply offence, or
(b) of a separate offence under this section, on the same, or substantially the same, facts as those relied on as evidence of commission of the offence in respect of which the person has been convicted.
(5) A person who has been acquitted of an offence under this section is not liable to be convicted:
(a) except as provided by subsection (3)–of a relevant supply offence, or
(b) of a separate offence under this section, on the same, or substantially the same, facts as those relied on as evidence of commission of the offence in respect of which the person has been acquitted.
(6) A person who has been:
(a) convicted of a relevant supply offence, or
(b) acquitted of a relevant supply offence, is not liable to be convicted of an offence under this section on the same, or substantially the same, facts as those relied on as evidence of commission of the relevant supply offence.
(7) Liability for relevant supply offences not affected by offence under this section Subject to subsections (4) and (5), this section does not:
(a) remove the liability of any person to be convicted of a relevant supply offence, or
(b) affect the punishment that may be imposed for any such offence.
(8) Definition In this section, “relevant supply offence” means any offence under this Act (other than under this section) relating to the supply of a firearm.
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