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More than 100 gang leaders contacted by police after reluctance to hand over guns

More than 100 gang leaders have been contacted by police as part of efforts to get them to hand over guns.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush fronted up to MPs at Parliament today and was asked about the progression of the gun buyback scheme.

There are six weeks left in the amnesty process.

Mr Bush said 115 prominent gang members had been contacted and 53 had met with police to discuss handing guns over.

He admitted to reporters that gang leaders were "reluctant" to hand over their guns.

The buyback scheme came after gun law changes that were spurred by the March 15 Christchurch terrorist attack, in which 51 people died.

The country-wide amnesty ends on December 20.

From then on, possessing a prohibited firearm will be a crime.

Police Minister Stuart Nash said on October 31 "more than 19,000 people have walked out the door with more than $62 million in payments".

"There have been almost 350 collection events, some held publicly and some held privately to suit gun clubs and hunting groups."

"More than 32,000 prohibited weapons have been removed from circulation. More than 120,000 prohibited parts such as high-capacity magazines have been handed in."

National's police spokesperson Brett Hudson said last week the buyback could be a failure "if it doesn’t take swift action to engage with responsible firearms owners and the firearms community".

"Gangs are not complying and we’re seeing no action from the Government tackle illegal firearm use," he said.

"The focus has always been on the law abiding firearms community."

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The country-wide gun buyback amnesty ends on December 20. Source: 1 NEWS