Sharpening the Knife: A critique of the criminalisation of bladed articles.

Research output: Other contributionpeer-review


In terms of weaponry, the knife is a particularly straightforward item to acquire and relatively simple to conceal. This seemingly innocent household tool, a necessity for many domestic chores, can nevertheless have devastating consequences if put in the wrong hands. Over the past 60 years, Parliament has become ever more concerned with the use of bladed articles in criminal offences and, as a result, has introduced a range of increasingly authoritative legislative measures, with the aim of regulating not simply the possession of offensive weapons and knifes, but also the sale of such items. Supplementary investigative measures were also created, designed to make the detection and prosecution of those in possession of knives more efficient. This paper critically considers the rationale and development of the various statutory provisions that have been enacted throughout the past six decades, and questions whether the law has been effective in achieving its aim.
Original languageEnglish
TypeConference paper
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Sept 2013


  • Knife
  • bladed article
  • regulation
  • offensive weapon


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