Beyond State Control: Improvised and Craft-produced Small Arms and Light Weapons

By
G. Hays and N.R. Jenzen-Jones
Publications
Report
Arabic
English

Although the number of craft-produced small arms and light weapons is difficult to estimate, they are prevalent and range broadly in sophistication and quality.

Improvised and craft-produced firearms remain an important source of firepower for a wide range of actors, including tribal groups, poachers, criminals, insurgent groups, and even some states and quasi-state groups. In various locations, these weapons account for most of the firearms used in crime; in others, their production is institutionalized, providing essential income for local gunsmiths.

Criminals outside of active conflict zones, especially in developing states and territories, appear to hold the highest concentrations of craft-produced small arms. In several countries, such firearms account for a sizable proportion of weapons seized in law enforcement operations.

The vast majority of improvised and craft-produced weapons cannot be easily traced, although certain forensic and investigative techniques show promise in closing this gap.

Beyond State Control: Improvised and Craft-produced Small Arms and Light Weapons provides an overview of the nature and scale of production, acquisition patterns, and implications for law enforcement and policy.

Keywords: craft improvised weapons