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More than 40 arrests and 10 weapons removed in summer crackdown on violent crime

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More than 40 arrests and 10 weapons removed in summer crackdown on violent crime

A targeted violence operation to intercept criminals bringing weapons and drugs onto London’s streets has concluded.

Operation Pandilla aims to disrupt high harm offenders using the roads in and out of London by using Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology. ANPR is a camera that is linked to a computer. When a vehicle passes the camera it records an image which is automatically ‘read’ by the computer and the vehicle registration is recorded.

Officers were on the lookout for vehicles linked to county lines, gangs and weapons travelling into areas blighted by street violence.

Coordinated by the Violent Crime Task Force, other teams including the Roads and Transport Policing Command (RTPC), Taskforce and the Dog Support Unit supported the intensified effort over three days (Tuesday, 3 to Thursday, 5 August).

The Met teamed up with county forces including Surrey, Thames Valley, Kent, Hertfordshire, City of London and Essex Police to work together to apprehend criminals using the road networks in and around the capital.

In London there were:

  • 46 arrests for offences including possession of an offensive weapon and possession with intent to supply Class A drugs;
  • 10 weapons seized;
  • 22 amounts of drugs recovered;
  • 20 other illegal items seized.

Acting Inspector Adam Cook, of the Violent Crime Task Force,coordinated the operation in London. He said: “Now we’ve come out of lockdown it is our absolute top priority to reduce violence and keep our communities safe over the summer period.

“Operation Pandilla was focused in specific areas where we know violence occurs. Our approach was targeted and led by intelligence coupled with ANPR, allowing us to stop those intent on causing harm to communities.

“Many of those arrested are dangerous individuals who exploit vulnerable people down a path of violence. Safeguarding is at the forefront of our minds and diversionary help and support was offered to every individual who was arrested.

“We know drugs are inextricably linked to street violence and at the heart of our policing plan this summer we are directly bearing down on what matters most to Londoners.

“The police cannot tackle violence alone. We need communities to tell us what they know. I urge anyone with information about violence and drug crime to report in confidence to the independent charity Crimestoppers, it is 100 per cent anonymous.”

+ If you have any information about violent crime, please contact police or the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 – your anonymity is guaranteed. They are a totally independent of police and you remain 100 per cent anonymous, they never ask your name and they cannot trace your call, your IP address or device you use. 

No detail you might have is too small - every bit of information helps towards the fight against knife crime in London.

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