Antimony Free Primers

As mentioned previously it was noted in casework that Yugoslavian 7.62 x 39 mm caliber nny 82 ammunition produces discharge particles containing barium, despite the fact that there is no barium in the primer, although it is present in the propellant. This indicates that the propellant can make a contribution to the elemental content of the discharge particles. In some incidents involving the use of ammunition with antimony-free primers, discharge particles containing antimony have been detected on suspects. The possibilities are that the antimony originated from the bullet, that the particles were due to contamination of the gun or ammunition from some previous firing, that the particles originated from some other incident in which the suspects were involved, or that the suspects had been exposed to contamination between apprehension and sampling.

To clarify the situation it was decided to investigate the possibility that the antimony originated from the bullet. Discharge residue particles originating from ammunition with antimony-free primers and antimony-hardened bullets were examined for the presence of antimony. Results are given in Table 20.14.

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