Sellers of "zombie knives" in Britain will face up to four years in jail from this week in a government crackdown on the "horrific" weapons.

Inspired by horror films and often advertised as collectors' items, the weapons - which have been involved in a string of vicious killings - are available on the internet for as little as £10 ($17.80).

An amendment to the Criminal Justice Act 1988 prohibiting the sale, manufacture, rental or importation of zombie knives will take effect on Thursday.

Those caught making or selling the items will face up to four years in prison.


Home Office Minister Sarah Newton said: "This Government will act wherever necessary to cut crime and keep our communities safe.

"Zombie killer knives glamorise violence and cause devastating damage - they have no place whatsoever in our society."

Chief Constable Alf Hitchcock, lead on knife crime at the National Police Chiefs' Council, added: "Zombie knives are absolutely horrific weapons. Forces are determined to reduce the harm caused by these and all other dangerous weapons."

The ban comes as figures show police are recording rising numbers of knife-related crimes.

Statistics show that in the year ending in March forces logged 28,664 offences involving a knife or sharp instrument, a 10 per cent jump compared with the previous 12 months.

The serrated zombie knives are up to 60cm long and are sold by online retailers and shops as a collectors' item, supposedly to be used to "exterminate the undead". They can be bought for as little as 8.

Two years ago, shocking pictures emerged of a female serial killer posing with one of the knives.

Joanna Dennehy, then aged 31, admitted stabbing three men in the heart and dumping their bodies in ditches in fields near to Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.

Despite killing the three, Dennehy remained unsatisfied and fled to Hereford in search of more victims.

She cruised the city and selected two other men at random, stabbing Robin Bereza, 64, and John Rogers, 56, who survived the cold-blooded attacks.

Earlier this year a 17-year-old was convicted of manslaughter and jailed after teenage student Stefan Appleton was stabbed to death with a "Zombie Killer" machete in north London in June 2015.

The ban applies to England and Wales. Daily Mail