Met officers trained in fast pursuit recover knives and drugs in police operation
Specially-trained officers conducted 21 fast pursuits, recovered drugs, knives, cash and stolen mopeds and targeted would-be thieves as part of a police operation set up to coincide with the end of lockdown restrictions.
Officers from Operation Venice and the Roads and Transport Policing Command focused their attention on hotspot areas at key times of the day to prevent those intent on using mopeds and other means of transport to steal from members of the public.
Officers recovered 100 wraps of Class A drugs and £2,000 in cash as part of the operation which saw officers patrolling the streets of London on motorbikes together with specially-trained TPaC (Tactical Pursuit and Containment) drivers.
They also seized a knife, a machete and ten stolen mopeds - some of which had false number plates. They also made seven arrests for a variety of offences included failing to stop for police, theft of motor vehicles, drug offences, robbery, possession of a bladed article and various traffic offences including not having insurance.
Robberies can take place in a matter of seconds with thieves using mopeds – and increasingly e-scooters and e-bikes– to snatch phones, wallets and bags without stopping.
Thieves tend to target members of the public who have their mobile phones in their hand or have placed valuable goods on a table whilst sat outdoors.
This type of offending has recently led the Met to launch a dedicated campaign encouraging those on the streets of London to ‘look up and look out’ and be aware of their surroundings.
Police Sergeant Clem Jones of the Operation Venice team said: “We want to ensure thieves don’t exploit the end of lockdown and the return to normality by targeting those living, visiting or working in London. We aimed to disrupt their activities and catch them in the act.
“We all tend to do so much on our mobiles and many of us use them for directions when out and about – this is when thieves spot us and target us. We often have other valuable items, such as headphones, on the go too. All of these things can attract opportunist thieves.
"We are urging people to work with us to reduce this crime type by being extra vigilant and being aware of their surroundings. Please look up and look out when you are out and about.
“If you are unlucky enough to fall victim to thieves please report it to police immediately by dialing 999 - this gives us a chance to catch the suspects while they are still in the area. We often receive reports when the victim has returned home which is usually too late for us to conduct a search for the suspects."
Anyone who witnesses a crime taking place should dial 999, for non emergencies please dial 101 or Tweet @MetCC.
- Stay aware of your surroundings and pay attention to who is around you
- Keep valuables such as mobile phones, watches and cash out of sight
- Plan your route home
More advice can be found here: https://www.met.police.uk/police-forces/metropolitan-police/areas/campaigns/2020/look-up-look-out/