Sales of ‘non-lethal weapons’ spike after mass sexual assaults in Germany

Sales of ‘non-lethal weapons’ spike after mass sexual assaults in Germany

A spate of Hundreds of sex assaults allegedly committed mostly by North African men on New Year’s Eve in Cologne has sparked an “explosion in sales” of pepper spray and non-lethal guns, German officials and an industry chief said. …

Two weeks after the mass incidents on New Year’s Eve, the number of criminal complaints reached 676 on Friday — including 347 sexual offenses, Cologne prosecutor Ulrich Bremer said. Five suspects are in investigative custody.

In addition to defensive sprays, Cologne police said it had already received more than 300 applications from adults wanting to carry imitation handguns and so-called gas pistols.

This was compared to 408 licenses for these weapons issued during all of 2015, police spokeswoman Daniela Lindemann said.

Germany’s strict gun laws mean that only hunters and professional marksmen are allowed to obtain licenses for lethal arms and would-be buyers are subject to background checks.

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