The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has condemned security company Maxtec Electronix for an advertisement that “condones the use of a shotgun to protect property from intruders”, echoing the case of jailed farmer Tony Martin.
The ASA, which in 1996 overruled a complaint against the ad, this time described it as “irresponsible”. The authority took into account Norfolk farmer Martin’s imprisonment for shooting two intruders at his home in 2000.
An ASA spokeswoman comments: “There have been legal developments which prove that using a gun to protect your property is not accepted by the courts.”
The ad shows a smiling farmer holding a smoking shotgun and cartridges being ejected. The strapline, which promotes the company’s perimeter security system, says: “This farmer was alerted by Maxtec Electronix Deter before break in.”
The company has been asked to amend the ad, which appeared in Countryside magazine in October, with the help of the Committee of Advertising Practice.
The company says farmers “appreciated the dry humour of the cartoon”, which is its most successful.
Express Newspapers has had two separate complaints upheld against it over Daily Express cover promotions for Virgin Atlantic and Royal Mail that misled readers about the terms of the offers.