gunsmith russia

FILE PHOTO: FSB illegal gunsmith arrests in Russia, March 2021
Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) apprehended 68 clandestine gunmakers in 31 Russian regions in a nationwide security sweep, seizing over 300 firearms, thousands of cartridges and almost 20 kg of explosives, the FSB press office told TASS on Tuesday.

"The Federal Security Service in coordination with the Interior Ministry and the National Guard foiled the criminal activity of 68 residents in 31 regions complicit in restoring the combat properties of civilian guns at underground workshops and their sale," the press office said in a statement.

FSB operatives seized 304 firearms of domestic and foreign manufacture, 83 artillery shells and mines, 51 hand grenades, 15 fuses, over 18.4 kg of explosives (gunpowder, TNT), more than 15,250 rounds of various caliber, 63 basic parts for firearms, and also 7 bladed weapons, it said.

"The activity of 31 underground workshops for the upgrade of weapons and the production of ammunition was busted," the statement reads.

The security sweep was carried out in October in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Sevastopol, the republics of Ingushetia, Mordovia, North Ossetia - Alania and Khakassia, the Altai, Krasnodar, Krasnoyarsk, Stavropol, Kemerovo (Kuzbass), Arkhangelsk, Belgorod, Voronezh, Irkutsk, Kaliningrad, Kaluga, Kurgan, Nizhny Novgorod, Novgorod, Pskov, Rostov, Samara, Smolensk, Tomsk, Ulyanovsk and Chelyabinsk Regions, the FSB press office reported.

The weapons seized by the FSB operatives included a PTRD anti-tank rifle, 3 machine-guns, 22 assault rifles, 14 submachine-guns, 114 rifles, carbines and guns, 150 pistols and revolvers, and also a 50mm mortar and a KPM-1A exploder, it specified.