"cover any implement that has a blade or point or that may be deemed as an offensive weapon".
Well that is scredrivers, scisors, razors, pens, pencils and the likes out thanks to points and blades and as to the bit I've put in bold, cricket bats, bunches of keys, credit cards, rolled up newspapers, in fact its harder to think of things that couldn't be deemed an offensive weapon depending on the circumstances! And unless the offesive weapons law in NI is different you already can be nicked for anything at all you are intending to use as an offensive weapon but this wording implies anything that could be used is going to land you in trouble.
Hope some enterprising copper arrests the minister for the biro in his pocket, maybe that will get across to him what a daft statement he made!
I believe that the article has simply tried to condense a lot of info into a short article. The change seems to be in two areas.
1 That if you are caught with a knife or offensive weapon in the wrong circumstances you will get a helftier sentence, double!
2 That they are looking at licensing places where knives are sold like guns and fireworks are here. (not so sure about this!)
You have to remember that glorious N.I. has different laws than the rest of GB. However the laws that they are referring to and the offenses listed are already in force under the Knives Act or the Criminal Justice Act and have been for years. Both are derived from English law with changes for N.I.
The laws around advertising refer to the marketing of knives in relation to 'combat' etc, not for other purposes. So no dramas about advertising pen knives unless you market them for violent purposes.
The Knives Act refers to blades or points of particular sizes. Im not going to go into that now as it would take ages and i have wittered on long enough. British Blades and threads on this site give good advice.
For clarification, as stated ANYTHING can be an offensive weapon But it has to be in the right circumstance. An offensive weapon is anything Made (like a knuckle duster), Adapted (Like a stick with nails hammered into the end), or Intended (like a knife or a biro) for causing injury to the person.
Remember there are defenses to carrying a knife in the right circumstances and remember I know a bit about the law in NI but don't take everything above as gospel.