It does appear that Mr Lassman is rather confused.
The Firearms Consultative Committee confirmed in 1997 there would have to be a change in legislation to cater for the exclusion of sub 12(6)FPE semi-auto airguns from Section 5.(as was intended)
This was again confirmed by the Firearms Consultative Committee in 2003.
As Mr Widdecombe was a member of the FCC at that time surely he would have corrected their misunderstanding.
The CPS appear to understand HOC 68/97, as do ACPO.