Met arrest 500 and seizes 130 blades in knife crime crackdown

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Hi Met has arrested 500 suspects and seized 130 knives in a series of raids across the capital as part of a week-long crackdown on violent thugs.

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Officers targeted known criminals and obtained warrants to search their homes, setting up knife arches to catch those carrying blades on London transport.

The teams also conducted finger-tip searches of crime hotspots where criminals are known to hide knives.

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The Met worked closely with the British Transport Police and hundreds of officers including special constables and cadets were involved in the action.

The arrests were made as part of Operation Scepter, a nationwide policing response to the scourge of knife crime.

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Last year, 30 teenagers were murdered in London, many of whom died from blade wounds. As well as detaining suspects and recovering weapons, officers went to schools to educate youth about the impact of knife crime on society and the dangers it poses to them.

88 schools were visited, while officers also spoke to shopkeepers about the importance of refusing to sell blades that could be used by criminals.

The operation was coordinated by the Met’s Violent Crime Taskforce (VCTF), which manages all London-wide operations focused on tackling violent crime.

Chief Inspector Rob Ranstead, who led the operation, said: “Our mission is to tackle violence and make communities safer across London – it’s one of our priorities.

“Operation Scepter is an intensification of the work we already do every single day and officers will never stop doing everything they can to target those who carry weapons on our streets.

“Education and working with young people is one of the key elements of Op Scepter. It’s about raising awareness of the dangers and consequences of knife crime. We hope people make the right decisions and don’t carry knives so that we Save lives and help keep our roads safe.

He added: “Policing alone cannot solve violent crime and I am grateful to all the partners and community members who have worked with us during this activity and joined our efforts.”

The Met Police Commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, previously stated that he wanted to bring the number of murders in London down from 130 to under 100.

The Met’s Violence Reduction Unit is working with homicide squads to reduce the numbers. It is estimated that each murder cost London £800,000, including legal costs to bring the killers to justice.

Met arrest 500 and seizes 130 blades in knife crime crackdown

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