In this article we reveal why WAPol must know it’s calibre claims are wrong.
It’s more than wrong: it’s a deliberate display of contempt for the state’s 90,000 shooters.

WAPol's calibre ban

AFTER A TIP OFF from a WA source about the calibre ban, the NSC did some investigating.

It’s now clear WA Police Minister Papalia and WAPOL have been pedalling lies about the reasons for the ban of 56 types of rifles and 19 ammunition calibres.  

The claim

During a media conference on Valentine’s Day where the WA Government announced bans on series of calibres and firearms, WAPOL Commissioner Kylie Whiteley was flanked by Police Minister Paul Papalia, where she said: 

“Some projectiles from these firearms are capable of penetrating the body armour worn by police officers as well as most hard surfaces of police vehicles from up to two kilometres away. With specific types of rounds, a bullet from those firearms can also penetrate WA Police force armoured vehicles.”

What they're talking about

The largest and most powerful calibre firearms on the new banned list are the Barnard GP in .50 BMG and the Boys Mk1. The largest rounds on the list are .50 BMG and .55 Boys, so it is safe to say she was specifically referring to these in her comments.

WAPOL have owned and operated for many years US manufactured armoured vehicles known as Lenco Bearcats. 

Similar vehicles are used by all other police agencies in Australia such as VICPOL & the AFP.

We were told that the Bearcats armour and toughened glass are rated to withstand hits from .50 Cal BMG. We checked our tip off and it proved to be 100% correct.

We confirmed this with our US contacts and WAPol themselves actually revealed this to the media last year when they announced the purchase of the new Bearcats to replace older models.

Putting the 50 and 55 Boys rounds to the test

Last year, Deputy Commissioner Whiteley (right) was boasting to WA media of the Bearcats capabilities, including their ability to protect WAPOL members from .50 Cal rounds (See link to story in West Australian/WA TODAY here ).

QPOL used their Bearcat in the recent tragic QLD police shootings.  It was shown on TV news badly shot up, sustaining numerous hits to its armour and vision glass. However it was NOT penetrated, as its manufacturers intended.

As for the Boys Mk1 and its .55 Boys rounds, the firearm is a museum piece. It was a World War 2 British anti tank rifle that hasn’t be made for some 75 years and its ammunition is not available.

The Boys was obsolete by the time WW2 started and was NOT widely used by the Australian Army during wartime.

The number of these rifles in Australia is miniscule and they are in the hands of museums and collectors.  They are simply no threat to WAPOL and its armoured vehicles.

It also means WAPol’s own information shows why it knows the calibre ban is about political grandstanding.

The commissioner with no idea...

Commissioner Whiteley has shown she has idea what she is talking about.  This could be because of a lack of knowledge, relying on the wrong people for advice, or at worst, being politically captive to Papalia.  Either way, Commissioner Whiteley has made statements that are incorrect and only serve to suit Papalia and his Government’s agenda.

At the same press conference Minister Papalia claimed it was police themselves who asked for the new gun/round calibre bans for their own protection. Let’s elaborate on this.

Protecting frontline police

Unlike other police agencies around the country WAPOL does NOT provide and issue ballistic vests to all its officers.

VicPol provides ballistic vests to all its uniformed officers that are worn on the job daily and covert vests for officers working plain clothes and undercover. Specialist VicPol units such as the Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) and the Special Operations Group (SOG) wear upgraded vests that offer increased ballistic protection.

Police Ballistic vests are rated at different levels according to the type of calibre they will stop if an officer is fired upon. The most commonly issued are Level 3 or Level 3A types. 

A level 3 will stop commercial grade (non-military spec) 7.62/5.56 rounds and a 3A will stop those and all handgun rounds up to and including .44 magnum.

The NSC’s VicPol contacts tell us that the CIRT/SOG units use vests with insertable ballistic plates that offer Level 4 protection, which include armour piercing rounds.

We have also been told WAPOL’s Tactical Response Group is similarly equipped.

if police protection is needed, then that's what waPol needs to focus on

The McGowan government announced a $5.7 billion budget surplus in 2021-22 and is expecting a $1.6 billion surplus in 2022-23. Yet despite this it refuses to properly equip their officers.

If Papalia and WAPOL command really cared about its force, it would issue body armour to all WA Police.  Instead he, and police command, have lied to West Australians to support their political agenda and narrative by attacking licensed gun owners rather than addressing their primary concern about protection.

If the WA “cancer” that we are seeing is allowed to take hold, it WILL spread to other States and the war on fiream owners will simply be the start of an orchestrated program.

Stop the contempt: Back the NSC

The calibre ban is based on an unfounded fear. It also demonstrates a contempt for shooters and open, transparent process. 

It’s why we will fight as hard as we can to protect not only the rights of WA shooters, but all shooters.

2023 is fast shaping up to be a critical year for all Australian shooters so if you are NOT already an NSC member.  If you’re already a member, please  share our stories and help sign up your shooting mates. 

8 thoughts on “WRONG CALIBRE: The lie behind WAPol’s calibre ban

  1. John Nielson says:

    I like what has been said by the NSC. I will go further to say, that the Premier of WA and Police Commissioner Papalia are scare mongering and putting ideas into the minds of the city population who think the sun shines out of the two mentioned backsides. Wrong! Lets look at how many offenders who were not carrying a firearm have been shot by police. If they are going to achieve their objectives then they should take all guns and pistols away from police as well. They walk around with pistols on hips looking like cowboys, which some of them are. Leave the respectable shooters alone. We enjoy our competition shoots on the weekends, with like-minded shooters. We have been shooting in WA for a 100 years and we are not cowboys. Wake up you city people! You will need us if any conflict or war breaks out. Do not trust the Premier or the Police Commissioner. (I back the NSC all the way as a member.)

    • Carmen says:

      100% mate. I’ve only been sports shooting for a couple of years and I have never been involved with such an inclusive, supportive, encouraging and safety-oriented community. This is an authoritarian ploy to incite unwarranted community fear so daddy government can sweep to the faux rescue and look like the saviour again.

      Yearly mental health checks should apply to elected officials and MPs since they’re tasked with making such important decisions on our behalf. Rules must be for thee, not just for me. In relation to this, the mental health system is under unprecedented duress following the past few years, combined with physicians increasingly leaving the sector due to stress, creating huge wait times to get assistance. Additionally, it will be unjust for someone to have their licence revoked for obtaining mental health support in the past.

      Interestingly, the underground bunker discovery in Perth that kick-started this latest fear festival occurred 6 months ago, why was there such a delay in releasing the story?

      Thanks for your work NPC.

  2. John Fabri says:

    we need to be getting this information out to the general non firearm owning public, so they can see the lies that the government stooges are peddling.

  3. LH says:

    There’s potentially a bigger problem here. If the WA government are prepared to lie or distort the facts on this issue, then they’re probably doing the same when it comes to other issues of more interest to the broader electorate.

  4. Neil Goodlet says:

    If these calibers are unsafe for WA how come they can be purchased from us by other Aust. States ? Does the WA Govt and Police believe it’s citizens are more dangerous than other Aussies ?

  5. mark whiteley says:

    for years and years shooters from other states have said that WA is like being in another country with its gun laws
    its time Australian shooters stood up to the government for some common sense gun laws instead of just accepting what you are told, before its too late for every shooter as we all well know that we will be next

  6. chris says:

    I agree with John Fabri, WE ALL need to get it out to the non shooting public because it is so important that they get at least a bit of fact to help them see the truth, as it is of no real value “preaching to the converted”. As a member I regularly send these e-mails on to others regardless of weather they support other less active shooting organizations or are not shooters at all. I am old enough to remember “She’ll be right, Howard can’t take the guns away” and am embarrassed to say that I was one of them, are you one now ??

  7. bruce carter says:

    I,m 74 i,ve been shooting since 12 yrs old, this garbage started with the lies told about Port Athur and will continue until we loose all but .22s, Police attend all shooting club meetings, you are being spied on, there is an underlying theme by police that they are the only people that should have guns, the lies and manipulation by police and parliamentarians dont stop. Look at the new Firearm carry rules in Victoria, look at the way duck shooting in Victoria is going they are banning it by stealth, cutting back the time we can shoot and bag limits to a point that no one will go, end of duck shooting. Australians are one of the most regulated group of individuals in the world, its going to get worse not better. National Gun register because cops wont talk to cops.
    National gun laws are on the way, a stroke of a National pen what more will be outlawed. Firearm owners, little by little over many, many years are being manipulated down a road to extinction, you are a dying breed, see it for what it is, not what you hope for and do something about it.

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