Central Taiwan police seize Czech army submachine gun from driver

Czech-made Skorpion vz. 61 fires 850 rounds per minute, street value as high as NT$800,000

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Police in Taichung announced on Wednesday (Dec. 6) that during a drug trafficking investigation, they discovered a suspect driving with a submachine gun used by the Czech military that is capable of firing 850 rounds per minute.

The Taichung City Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Corps said that in order to gain a reduced sentence, a suspect told police that a friend surnamed Ho (何) was in possession of an illegal firearm. In October, police obtained a warrant for Ho’s arrest and soon spotted him when he was driving through Taichung’s Xitun District.

When they pulled him over, a Skorpion vz. 61 submachine gun was found in his car, along with two magazines and 38 bullets, reported SET News.

The weapon was manufactured by Ceska zbrojovka Uhersky Brod during the Cold War in former Czechoslovakia. It can fire 850 rounds per minute and because the weapon confiscated from Ho had a stock installed, it is considered a military variant.

When questioned by police, Ho claimed a friend had given the gun to him and that he had never used it. He was later transferred to the Taichung District Prosecutor’s Office to be investigated for breaching the Act Controlling Guns, Knives and Ammunition (槍砲彈藥刀械管制條例).

Police found that Ho had no record of serious or violent crimes, nor was there evidence that he used or sold drugs. However, his possession of the submachine gun and ammunition constituted a violation of gun control laws.

Ho claimed that the street market value of the firearm was between NT$600,000 and NT$800,000 and that it had been given to him by his deceased friend for “safekeeping.” According to Ho, although he kept the gun in his car, he denied ever using it to commit any crimes.

After commencing the investigation for violating gun laws, police released Ho on NT$20,000 bail.

The Skorpion vz. 61, called Skorpion for short, is an assault weapon designed for close-quarters combat for the Czech military and security forces, as well as the militaries of other former Warsaw Pact countries. Due to its compact size, it can be fired with one hand and has a maximum effective range of 100 meters.

Central Taiwan police seize Czech army submachine gun from driver
(Taichung City Police Department photo)

Central Taiwan police seize Czech army submachine gun from driver
(Taichung City Police Department photo)

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