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Met continues to crack down on firearm offences

  • June 17, 2024
  • 3 min read
Met continues to crack down on firearm offences

A team of specialist detectives from across the Met are leading the fight against illegal firearms to prevent devastating and fatal consequences. Reaffirming their efforts to protect Londoners and “ensure firearms have no place in the capital,” officers are dismantling serious and organised crime groups who pose the greatest harm.

This has led to a record low in firearms offences in the last fifteen years across London. Last year alone, 386 illegal firearms were seized across the capital – more than one a day. The Met has also achieved the highest detection rate of people responsible for shootings in the last 11 years, with one in two (52%) criminals being prosecuted.

Since March 2023 there has been a reduction from 196 firearms offences to 145. There has also been a sustained reduction in firearm related murders in the last three years – from 12 murders in 2021/22, to ten in 2022/23, and eight murders in 2023/24.

“There is no place for firearms on the streets of London,” the Met says, “and every single death or injury is a tragedy, leaving victims and their families with life changing effects. While progress has been positive, there are still firearms offences taking place.”

Specialist officers continue to use data, forensics and technology to locate illegal firearms and arrest the criminals responsible. Officers investigate criminals with a previous history of carrying a firearm and their associates, as well as working closely with communities to gain new intelligence, conduct searches of properties where there may be suspected firearms and employ covert tactics, such as surveillance.

Across Harrow, Brent and Barnet, the work of officers has meant there has not been a single firearms-related murder since 2020, the Met says. That’s compared to previous years when there was at least one fatal shooting per year between 2014 and 2020. Additionally, since 2020, 80 offenders have been charged with various firearm offences, 64 of these have so far been convicted resulting in a total of 367 years in jail.

In South East London, specialist officers have driven down firearms offences in Lambeth and Southwark by 44 per cent – from 45 offences in 2022/23 to 25 in 2023/24.

Between, 21st May and 6th June, a total of 51 suspects were arrested across Westminster as part of a successful operation targeting gangs and organised crime. The operation, run in partnership with Westminster Council led to the seizure of 17 firearms. 17kg of drugs and more than £150,000 in criminal assets were also seized as part of efforts to make Westminster and the surrounding boroughs safer for local communities.

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