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UPDATE: Ongoing operation in Bromley

News   •   Sep 10, 2020 15:36 BST

[Recovered air weapons]

A loaded shotgun, a number of air weapons and stolen property have been found following an operation involving hundreds of officers in Bromley.

In the early hours of Wednesday, 9 September, officers from across the Met executed warrants at a site on Star Lane in Orpington.

Searches at the site have been ongoing for more than 24 hours, and officers have so far found:

- A loaded shotgun;
- Seventeen air weapons, as well as a rifle, a BB gun and a musket;
- CS gas;
- A machete;
- Rounds of ammunition, some homemade.

A number of caravans and quad bikes on the site have been identified as stolen, and around £112,000 in cash and Class A drugs has also been recovered.

The air weapons will now be tested. Only air weapons that use, or are designed or adapted for use with a self-contained gas cartridge system are prohibited under the Firearms Act. Otherwise, they are legal to buy and own. Owners of air weapons of a certain power need to hold a firearms certificate.

Seven people were arrested for offences including possession of criminal property, possession of ammunition, handling stolen goods and burglary. 

Two people found at the site are being supported by the Met's Modern Slavery Team. A total of 17 dogs have been seized from the site, some of which have since been confirmed as stolen.

Commander Kyle Gordon, the Gold Commander for the operation, said: “We have already found a number of weapons and other items of interest following this significant operation, and our searches at the site will continue.

“A firearm seized by police represents a weapon that is not in the hands of someone who might use it to harm others, and commit crime. 

“Every officer across the Met – from local neighbourhoods teams all the way up to our specialist crime investigators – is focused on bringing those responsible for violence on the streets of London to justice, to keep our communities safe."

The operation started as a result of work carried out by the local Safer Neighbourhoods Team (SNT).

The officers launched a proactive operation which led them to identify a series of crimes believed to be carried out by suspects linked to this location.

It involved highly trained Counter Terrorism Specialist Firearms Officers (CTSFOs), teams from the Territorial Support Group, Dog Support Unit and specialist search officers. Dozens of officers from the local Basic Command Unit were also deployed.

Anyone with information on crimes in the community should call 101, tweet @MetCC or report it online via the Met website.

For serious crimes, or in an emergency always call 999. Alternatively, to stay completely anonymous, contact the charity Crimestoppers on freephone 0800 555 111 or fill in their simple and secure anonymous online form.

Information about the people arrested:

[A] A 27-year-old man arrested on suspicion of possession of drugs, and possession of ammunition - charged with possession of cannabis, and released under investigation for the ammunition offence;
[B] A 22-year-old man arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods, possession of criminal property, and possession of prohibited ammunition - bailed to a date in early October;
[C] A 56-year-old woman arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods, possession of criminal property, and possession of prohibited ammunition - bailed to a date in early October;
[D] A 26-year-old man arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods, possession of criminal property, and possession of prohibited ammunition - bailed to a date in early October;
[E] A 19-year-old man arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods, possession of criminal property, and possession of prohibited ammunition - bailed to a date in early October;
[F] A 30-year-old man arrested on suspicion of burglary - bailed, but charged with being a prohibited person in possession of an air weapon;
[G] A 59-year-old man arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods - no further action to be taken.