OP TARGET: Local policing team partners with Liverpool Council to tackle serious violence
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Yesterday (29th October), officers from Liverpool’s Local Policing Team were joined by Liverpool Council's Public Protection Unit in an effort to tackle anti-social behaviour including street drinking as well as putting preventative measures in place to stop serious violence being committed in the area.
Local Policing Sergeant Carol McCartney said: “My team work day in, day out to ensure the public in our local area feel safe and protected from those involved in dangerous criminal activity.
“We are hugely passionate about educating the public and putting preventative measures in place to make sure more serious crime is reduced. As part of this, we have been working closely with Liverpool Councils Public Protection Unit, Immigration and Human Trafficking Teams with the aim of safeguarding vulnerable people and supporting local businesses during this turbulent time.”
During the evening, the team visited 8 off licences to identify those selling counterfeit cigarettes and others breaking licencing agreements as well as carrying out a number of stop searches, in order to identify those carrying dangerous weapons.
The evening, which focused on preventative policing ahead of the Halloween and Bonfire weekend, saw officers briefed at Tuebrook Police Station at 2:30pm before heading into North Liverpool.
The largest result came from an Off Licence on West Derby Road, following intelligence received stating that the shop was breaking their licencing conditions. Here, the Public Protection Unit seized around £8,000 worth of counterfeit cigarettes and tobacco as well as alcohol and nitrous oxide canisters.
The shop worker was also found to be working illegally.
Enforcement Officer Mark Wainwright from Liverpool Council’s Public Protection Unit said: “It is always a huge help to have the support of officers with us when carrying out these sorts of deployments.
“Yesterday’s seizure means that this off licence in particular could be faced with a fine of up to £10,000. I would therefore strongly urge any other business operating illegally to really consider the consequences of their actions, not only could you face a large financial burden but this could impact on other aspects of your lives and potentially cause the shop to close down.
“Like the police, we aim to protect the wider public from criminal repercussions and we will do everything in our power to ensure shop owners are abiding by the rules. This has a knock on effect on those living in the area and I hope they appreciate our efforts to make their neighbourhoods safer.”
This month so far, #OpTarget officers and local policing teams have been working continuously to make sure weapons and dangerous substances are taken out of circulation, and those involved in illegal activity, whether that is for their own financial gain or they have links to gangs and serious violence, are also taken off our streets.
Together, across Liverpool this month (1st -30th October) we have successfully conducted 97 open land searches where we have recovered 47 weapons and other items. 85 weapons have been recovered from stop searches whilst 373 people have been arrested in relation to serious violence, knife crime and firearms offences.
Sgt McCartney concluded: “We believe everyone is entitled to live free from harm and aspire to positive futures and that’s why we’ll continue working with partners to protect those living in Liverpool. The prevention measures put in place now have every potential to deter a vulnerable young person from getting involved in serious violence and we will do everything we can to arrest those enabling criminal behaviour.”
If you have concerns for someone you know, you believe that an off licence near you is breaking rules, or you have information regarding another issue in your area, please get in touch @MerPolCC or contact @CrimestoppersUK anonymously.