The Guns Of Parisian Law Enforcement

Nathaniel F
by Nathaniel F

Let it not be said that when provoked, Paris won’t respond in kind. Following the cowardly attacks on the city last week, the French National Police came out in force armed with several different kinds of firearms, some fairly old but still very capable in the hands of trained professionals. Polish blog Broń i Amunicja posted several photos of PN officers armed with at least three different kinds of weapons: St. Étienne M12SD submachine guns, Mousqueton AMD select-fire carbines, and SIG Sauer P2022 handguns. Broń i Amunicja’s posts are embedded below:

The St. Étienne M12SD submachine guns are license-produced versions of the Beretta Model 12 submachine gun, adopted by the Police Nationale in 1988. They are select-fire, open-bolt weapons with folding metal stocks, making them very compact weapons. Though not as flashy or impressive as the more famous Heckler & Koch MP5 submachine gun, they are still competitive weapons with the only major drawback being reduced accuracy due to open bolt firing.

Mousqueton AMD is the name given to Ruger Mini-14 rifles made on contract with the French government for internal and police use, and the Mini was chosen for its more domestic appearance, especially versus the radical-looking FAMAS which had just been adopted. Adopted in 1978, the rifles are stamped “Mousqueton A.M.D. – 5.56 A.P.” on the rear receiver heel, “AMD” standing for “Intermediate Defense Weapon” (EDIT: I am wrong, it stands for “Armament and Means of Defense”) in French, and “AP” for “Prison Administration”. The rifles are also marked with Ruger markings, which are located on the receiver side, under the wood line. Some Mousqueton AMDs feature a unique curved forward charging handle style that interestingly is shared with the MAS M12SD discussed above. Sources differ on whether the guns were made by Ruger for the French government or made in France under license; both may be true.

The pistols used by PN officers are SIG Sauer P2022 handguns, a modification of the SIG Sauer Pro series designed for the French government, and intended to serve from its introduction in 2002 for two decades, hence the name 2022. It is a polymer framed pistol with a light rail and interchangeable grip panels, which were very advanced features for its year of introduction.

Finally, an image of resilience and resistance, a ballistic shield used by the BRI entry team countering the Bataclan theater attack, showing 18 impacts, reportedly from 7.62mm bullets fired from AK-type rifles:

Vive la France!

EDIT: Some readers have requested I embed the images here so that they are easier to see on mobile. Your wish is my command!

Nathaniel F
Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. He can be reached via email at

More by Nathaniel F

Join the conversation
2 of 140 comments
  • Brian M Brian M on Nov 23, 2015

    Huh, I thought there were pics of them using FNC's, too.

  • Doom Doom on Nov 28, 2015

    TRIGGER CONTROL! TRIGGER CONTROL EVERYWHERE! I would make a joke about keeping fingers off triggers come naturally to the french, but they were, and are, bad @$$es, they just had a little stint where they thought pounding their swords into plows worked.