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Notting Hill gang members jailed after Trident operation

News   •   Jun 11, 2018 17:21 BST

[Five defendants sentenced]

Five members of a Notting Hill gang who made drill music videos to glorify violence have been jailed after admitting conspiracy to commit violent disorder.

The gang pleaded guilty at Kingston Crown Court on Wednesday, 16 May after arming themselves with machetes and baseball bats to take on a rival gang last November.

On Monday, 11 June they were sentenced at the same court.

Micah Bedeau, 18 (5.6.99) of Colville Square W11 was jailed for a total of three years and three months. He was sentenced to three years' imprisonment for conspiracy to commit violent disorder and three months to run consecutively for possession of cannabis.

Yonas Girma, 21 (25.7.96) of Hounslow Road, Hanworth was jailed for a total of three years and six months. He was sentenced to three years' imprisonment for conspiracy to commit violent disorder and 12 months to run concurrently for possession of an offensive weapon. He received an extra six months to run consecutively after being found in possession of a make-shift knife in prison while on remand for this case.

Isaac Marshall, 18 (23.12.99) of Ladbroke Grove W10 was jailed for a total of two years. He was sentenced to two years' imprisonment for conspiracy to commit violent disorder and 15 months to run concurrently for possession of a bladed article.

Jordan Bedeau, 17 (13.2.01) of Colville Square W11 (brother of Micah) was sentenced to a total of a 12-month detention and training order. He received a 12-month order for conspiracy to commit violent disorder and a 10-month order to run concurrently for possession of a bladed article.

Rhys Herbert, 17 (29.6.00) of Lonsdale Road W11 was sentenced to a total of a 12-month detention and training order. He received a 12-month order for conspiracy to commit violent disorder and a 10-month order to run concurrently for possession of a bladed article.

A hearing continues, and has been adjourned until Friday, 15 June, to determine whether the defendants should also be given either three or five-year Criminal Behaviour Orders prohibiting them from making this type of music - referencing violence - again. Local officers at Hammersmith and Fulham and Kensington and Chelsea spent two years gathering evidence of the gang's music and social media activity for intelligence purposes and presented a raft of evidence to the court to demonstrate how the gang were promoting violence through their lyrics and actions.

One song called 'No Hook' included sounds of gun shots and lyrics such as:

"Clock me an opp (opposing gang member), wind down the window, back (get) out the spinner (revolver firearm) and burst (shoot) him."

"I put bullets in numerous guys like how come the opps (opposing gang members) ain't learning?"

"OT trip (out of town or county line) trying to get some funds (money). We get bread (money) and invest in guns. Dem boy run when we tapped **** Ching (stab) Splash (stab) aim for his lungs."

"Man lurky (creeping around with intent) that’s standard. That’s gang that’s gang. Four men on two peds (mopeds) jump off with my shank (knife) leave an opp (rival gang member) boy splattered (covered in blood)."

The CBOs also aim to prohibit the defendants from entering certain areas and associating with other gang members, displaying gang-related 'hand gestures' and having any face coverings, such as a bandana, in a public place.

The defendants were stopped by police in Colville Square W11 on 9 November 2017 during a proactive operation to target gang violence in the area. They were in or close to a car and armed with four large machetes and baseball bats, plus masks, balaclavas and gloves.

The court heard the group were about to launch an attack on a rival gang from Shepherd's Bush, possibly in retaliation for an incident involving the grandmother of two of their members.

A YouTube video had been posted showing a Snapchat broadcast of the grandmother being harassed, abused and threatened by members of the rival gang, leaving her distressed - simply because she was in their postcode area.

The video concluded with: "Horrid1ComeGetYourNan" - the court heard Horrid1 was the street name for Micah Bedeau and the video was designed to goad the Notting Hill gang into action.

Officers saw Herbert get out of the car, a black Nissan Juke, with his face covered and holding something metallic to his right side.

Upon seeing police, he made off and was chased and detained by a PC. A large machete was found hidden down his trouser leg.

Officers searched the Nissan and discovered Girma, Marshall and Jordan Bedeau inside. Police found a large machete-style knife on Marshall and another on the back seat. In the front passenger footwell was a baseball bat with a second found in the boot. Gloves and a balaclava were also found inside the car.

Micah Bedeau was found and detained in the communal hallway of a black of flats in Colville Square. Inside his address officers found a large machete, a small knife and a balaclava.

The five were arrested and subsequently charged.

There had been a long history of disputes between the gangs.

Detective Chief Superintendent Kevin Southworth, head of the Trident and Area Crime Command, said: "Seven music videos were shown in court as evidence of the aggressive and violent nature of the suspects. The lyrics, mainly written by Herbert, referenced several real and often violent events. Their aim was purely to glorify gangs and violence.

"At Trident and across the Met we are very clear we will take decisive action to get videos of this nature removed from the internet; despite what the gangs may claim, there is a clear link, as in this case, to violence. And we will bring those videos before the courts to demonstrate the intention of those who make and take part in them to cause violence and disorder. It is just one of the tactics we use as part of our continued work to tackle violence on London's streets.

"There is no doubt the five defendants that day were in the process of setting out to cause some very serious harm to their rivals. They equipped themselves with huge knives and I am sure there would have been some life-changing injuries inflicted if not worse had police not intervened.

"Trident's proactive team is committed to tackling gang and knife crime and the events of 9 November show just how important our work is. The evidence was overwhelming - they were literally caught red-handed - and they had no option but to plead guilty."

Paul Vickers, Senior Crown Prosecutor at CPS London South, said: “These defendants claimed they were on their way to make a drill music video and that the weapons in their possession were simply to be used as props – but the prosecution proved otherwise. These criminals were embroiled in bitter gang violence.

“The sheer array of weapons, including machetes and baseball bats, with which these young people armed themselves, showed that they were out to commit violence. They will now spend a significant amount of time behind bars.

“We will continue to work with the Metropolitan Police Service to root out gang crime by prosecuting those responsible for the devastating consequences of gang culture on the capital’s streets.”

+ Reporting restrictions were lifted during sentencing for the juveniles.