Portugal: Training on combatting trafficking in firearms

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01 October 2021
Pedro Moura: Public Security Police (Portugal)

The onsite training activity 18/2021 - FIREARMS - Legal, strategic and operational aspects of firearms trafficking took place from the 21st September till the 24th September. This course, organised by the Weapons and Explosives Department (DAE), the Higher Institute of Police Sciences and Internal Security (ISCPSI) and CEPOL, took place at Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport Auditorium, Oporto, Portugal. Almost 40 participants from 20 EU Member States joined this activity, together with delegates from Republic of North Macedonia, Kosovo*, Denmark, FRONTEX and EUROPOL.

The course aimed to:

  • Recognize differences in the legal situation between EU Member States;
  • Discussion of strategies to prevent the diversion of legal firearms deliveries;
  • Analyse possible steps for unifying deactivation standards to prevent illegal reactivations;
  • Analyse other threats identified in the European Union by EMPACT FIREARMS and EUROPOL such as the illegal conversion of expansive acoustic weapons, gas/alarm weapons and Flobert and potential legal and strategic solutions;
  • Comparison of prevention tools across Member States (eg keeping records/control of legal firearms throughout their lifecycle, preventing the conversion of weapons, etc.);
  • Share best practices across EU Member States to provide police officers with real-time mobile access to certain sources of information, including access to databases related to weapons and permits to use and carry weapons,
  • Ensure efficient sharing of information on the detection of trafficking in firearms / explosives, especially to follow the movements of possible terrorists or criminal groups using firearms;
  • The use of internet and darknet by criminal groups and ways to fight them;
  • Promote the development of parallel financial investigations related to illegal firearms trafficking.

The course counted on the participation of national and international experienced experts belonging to:

  • the Portuguese Public Security Police, Judiciary Police and Customs Authority;
  • the European Commission;
  • Spain (Guardia Civil); Romania and UK NABIS (National Ballistics Intelligence Service);
  • the Flemish Peace Institute, from Belgium.

The Activity Manager stated that:

Training and valuing the human resources of police officers constitute one of the main objectives and an essential factor for change. Training activities like this allow not only the reinforcement of motivation, but also the development of individual and collective, technical and management skills and qualifications, adapting them to the needs to fulfil our missions. Training has been and will continue to be an essential part of achieving this goal.

In recent years, the PSP has been increasing not only the number of its training actions but also the quality of them, which is reflected in the reinforcement of the skills of its staff, having invested in particular in the areas of police technique and tactics.

A very important part of the training area has been the collaboration with CEPOL for several years, not only in terms of indicating trainees for the various training actions provided under the aegis of CEPOL as well as organizing courses in matters in which PSP has acquired over the years a specialization and experience of great importance and which we have shared with our partners through the organization of several courses.

*The designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence.

Contributions are directly provided by CEPOL partners and published on this page “as is”. As a result, CEPOL shall hold no responsibility in the accuracy of content provided by the partner. Opinions reflected in these blogspots shall not be deemed to represent CEPOL’s Management or staff’s opinion.



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