Amazon Caught Illegally Selling Knives Without Age Checks

By Gary Cutlack on at

An investigation into the sending-out practises of omnipresent shopping giant Amazon has found some worrying procedural flaws in its dealing with potential weapons, with reporters ordering fold-out knives in the names of people under the age of 18 and finding that no further checks were made to verify the age of the recipient.

Current legislation says it's illegal to sell folding knives with blades longer than three inches to people under 18; a fact currently being highlighted by the horrible case of schoolboy Bailey Gwynne, who was killed by a teenager using a four-inch knife purchased from Amazon who'd circumvented any delivery checks by sticking a note on his door.

This prompted the Guardian to do the same thing and see if it worked. And it did work, with two 9.5cm age-restricted knives being delivered without any verification. In Amazon's defence it only says that "a signature may be required on delivery" to prove the identity of the recipient, although the shopping giant refused to comment on this particular case, or the use of the knife in Bailey Gwynne's case.

The use of the term "Legal Carry" in some sales listings is also a bit unsettling, allowing retailers to skirt the very edges of the laws without asking the kids of Croydon what sort of bushcraft they have planned. [Guardian]

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