Interior ministry: Not possible to tell when academy's weapons went missing

Tarmo Miilits.
Tarmo Miilits. Source: Ministry of the Interior

It is not possible to know when several weapons went missing from the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences, the secretary general of the Ministry of Interior told ERR on Monday.

Secretary General Tarmo Miilits said the ministry initiated proceedings on September 23 after an audit flagged up several problems related to the handling of firearms and specialist equipment.

During supervisory proceedings, everything in the field of weapons at the academy was reviewed to check it met the required standards, such as instructions, registers, handovers and inventories, he said.

It was revealed that six service weapons, "old Makarov-type weapons" which are between 20 and 30 years old, were unaccounted for. It is not known if they were in working order. They were previously used by the police.

Miilits said it is not possible to know exactly when they went missing.

"It is not possible to give an exact timeframe, as the last inventories carried out when officials changed over were not carried out as correctly as they should have been," he said, adding the commission could not establish when they were made correctly. "The interviews that were carried out raised some doubts."

The Estonian Academy of Security Sciences. Source: Estonian Concrete Association

Several people have already resigned, one of which was academy Rector Marek Link on Monday morning. Miilits said replacements will be in position, ideally, by December 31.

Additionally, extra procedures will be introduced at the academy so a similar situation cannot arise again.

The authorities were notified of the missing weapons as soon as it was noted they were missing, he said.

The Police have started misdemeanor proceedings under the Weapons Act related to the violation of requirements for handling firearms.

"The aim is to locate, identify and rule out the possibility that these weapons have fallen into someone's hands maliciously," Miilits said.


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Editor: Merili Nael, Helen Wright

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