Colombia Knife Laws

Colombia’s Knife Laws: A Guide To Safe And Legal Use

In Colombia, the laws governing the possession and use of knives are strict. It must be followed by residents and visitors correspondingly.

So, to avoid any legal difficulties, it is quite important to know the rules and restrictions of carrying a knife in Colombia.

The question may arise, what are the knife laws in Colombia? According to Colombian Police, carrying knives is a break of the rule. You might be jailed for 24 hours in case of suspicious behavior while carrying a knife.

One interesting fact is, along with knives, Daggers, Machetes, Axes, and any other sharp equipment equivalent to knives are considered as a knife by Colombian Police.

By researching the specific laws and regulations, you will be provided with the details. So keep your eyes here to learn the knife law in Colombia!

The Knife Laws In Colombia

People are typically concerned about whether a gun, not a knife, is permitted in a certain area. Because a knife may not be as targeted as a gun in a criminal offense.

However, several people have recently been attacked with knives in South American countries such as Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia.

So, if you always carry a knife for a certain purpose, you must first determine whether the knife is authorized to carry.

List Of Illegal Knives In Colombia

In Colombia, knife laws might not be as clear-cut as you would think. It’s important to be aware of what is considered a “dangerous knife” and what is illegal. Because the crime ratio using knife are increasing alarmingly.

So, what are the legal knife lengths in Colombia for carrying? There is no exact length mentioned that is illegal to carry. However, carrying it must be well trustworthy. Otherwise, even carrying a knife in a car in Colombia may result in a fine.

One thing is for sure, automatic knives are a no-go. These knives are controlled by a switch and are strictly prohibited in Colombia. But it’s not just about switch-controlled knives; rather, anything sharp and dangerous can land you in hot water.

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This may include Stiletto Knives, Push Daggers, Machetes, and other knives known for their sharpness and potential danger.

Surprisingly, the Colombian Police have a broad definition of what constitutes a “knife.” They include

  • Daggers
  • Machetes
  • Axes
  • Penknives
  • Pocket knives
  • Sabers, swords, and more under the umbrella term of “knives”
Objects Qualify As Knives

So if you’re planning to carry a knife in Colombia, it’s wise to stick to the side of caution and avoid anything highly unsafe. Stay safe and in compliance with knife laws!

Knives Are Prohibited In Public Places

Knives, and Colombian police prohibit other dangerous weapons like pepper spray in public places.

So, what kind of public space is it? Would carrying it in a Colombian street violate the code of conduct? No, it does not. It is not suitable for all locations. It mostly consists of public gatherings such as concerts and sporting activities such as a tournament.

This action is intended to decrease the risk of knife crimes while ensuring public safety in busy places.

Why Are Using Knives Restricted In Colombia?

To answer the question, let’s have a look at the top 10 countries in the world featuring stabbed death.

CountryTotal Stabbed Death(2019)
Brazil 9885
South Africa9424

This data is according to world population review research. Look, Colombia has been featured here as one of the top countries in the world to have a greater number of stab death.

The Top 10 Countries for Deadly Stabbings

Let’s analyze the cause in detail.

Sharp and dangerous knives are the weapon of choice for many criminals in Colombia. Their accessibility and low penalties for carrying make them a popular option for robbers. The alarming truth is that knives were involved in several homicides in the country.

This is why the Colombian government and law enforcement take the restriction of knives seriously. The Colombian government and law enforcement hope to reduce the number of violent crimes and keep the citizens safe by prohibiting knife carry.

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It’s important to note that if you’re caught carrying a knife in Colombia, the consequences could be fines.

Carrying A Knife In Colombia: Penalties And Other Relevance

Carrying a knife is a crime in Colombia, according to the Colombia Police Code. If caught, you might face a fine of up to 200,000 pesos. The knife will be seized as well.

According to the Constitution of 1993, the government can prohibit carrying guns in public.

 Constitution of 1993

Several homicides are involved knife stabbing. Also, around 3,000 people died of knife stabbing as per some statistics. You should keep in mind that it isn’t allowed everywhere to carry too.

The Colombian Constitutions

Another matter of discussion is the Colombian Constitution of 1991.

Colombian Constitution of 1991

In terms of this law, only the Government can introduce and manufacture weapons, war ammunition, and explosives. No one may possess or carry them without permission from the competent authority.

So you can imagine how serious Colombia’s higher authorities are about any type of weapon that might hurt humanity. Because Colombia has so many conflicts and school-based violence, the government is taking this concern very seriously.

So, whether it’s a gun, ammo, or even just a knife, they’re all taken seriously by the law.

Therefore, it is recommended to avoid carrying knives in Colombia. Because it could result in legal consequences and the loss of your knife.

Instead, it is best to be cautious and aware of your surroundings to stay safe.

Relevant Laws

Here, we will have a look at some other quite relevant laws about guns and other weapons. However, this is from the Colombian constitution, 1993

Weapons Of Restricted Use

Arms are restricted means using an authorized gun or arms for a valid purpose. Like using for a war, or a member of an armed force who can use the gun on a valid personal basis.

 Constitution of 1993 (Article 9)

Weapons For Civilian Use

This law demonstrates the civilian usage of a gun. They may use this for self-defense. Or if someone is a collector of guns, but with the necessary permit.

 Constitution of 1993 (Article 10)

Personal Defense Weapons

This part is setting the criteria for a personally used gun. Elaborating what sort of gun you can get a permit to use, and approved for personal usage.

 Constitution of 1993 (Article 11)


If you still have something to know, keep your eyes on this section.

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Q: What is the definition of a knife according to Colombian law enforcement?

Colombian law enforcement considers a knife to be any sharp object that can be used as a weapon. These may include daggers, machetes, axes, penknives, pocket knives, sabers, and swords.

Q: Can foreigners legally carry knives in Colombia?

Foreigners are subject to the same laws as Colombian citizens regarding knives and other weapons. In addition, some foreigners are penalized for carrying knives. This is such a serious crime that anyone can be penalized even if they have a valid reason for carrying knives.

Q: What are the steps taken in Colombia to regulate the carrying of knives?

Measures had been taken in Colombia after noticing the homicides of knife stabs. But in 2018, major cities like Bogotá, Cali, Medellín, and Barranquilla made it a criminal offense to carry knives.


In summary, the knife laws in Colombia are strict and must be followed by residents and visitors. It is imperative to understand the regulations and restrictions of carrying a knife in Colombia to avoid any legal difficulties.

The Colombian Police have a broad definition of what constitutes a “knife” and automatic knives are strictly prohibited. Knives are restricted in public places to decrease the risk of knife crimes and ensure public safety.

However, the consequences of carrying a knife in Colombia can be fines and also the confiscation of the knife. The Colombian Constitution of 1991 only allows the government to introduce and manufacture weapons.

It prohibits the possession and carrying of weapons without permission. Lastly, to stay safe and avoid legal consequences, it is recommended to be cautious while carrying knives in Colombia.

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