British war veterans have been smuggling weapons, including bazookas and other rocket launchers, from Iraq and Afghanistan into Britain as spoils.
Military sources have revealed that British Special Forces consider themselves above the law and bring home the weapons, some of them stolen from Americans, as war trophies. Top military echelons are now calling on the Ministry of Defense to consider amnesty for the soldiers who have smuggled arms into Britain as spoils to encourage them to hand in the weapons. Back in 2011, an amnesty issued for the Special Air Service’s(SAS) based in Hereford led to shocking disclosures of the level of military hardware smuggling. Some of the items handed in to the army at the time were rocket - propelled grenades(RPG), a grenade launcher, machine guns and a 66mm rocket launcher. " In theory, the men and their shipping containers are supposed to be checked by military police, but in reality many aren ' t really subjected to much scrutiny. There ' s a feeling that the rules don ' t apply to them and that they are entitled to bring stuff back, ”The Independent quoted an unnamed SAS official as saying. "A lot of our guys came back from Iraq having nicked loads of gear from the Americans. Some men like to bring an AK-47 back just to hang on the wall. There is no intent to smuggle as such, but the whole thing is badly administered. We need to get a grip on this,” the source added. This comes as the Ministry of Defense has denied soldiers’ arms smuggling saying service personnel "are not permitted to possess illegal firearms”.