Gangland stabbing victims 'pay vets to stitch up wounds to avoid police over snitch fears'

Stephen Walter
Marcellus Baz, the SPOTY Unsung Hero Award winner, said he knew a vet who stitched up wounds. Pictured with the Duke of Cambridge - Social Media Internet

Gangland stabbing victims are paying vets a going rate of £200 to patch up their wounds so they can avoid the police, former members have claimed.

The BBC says sources have told them it had been "going on for years" with those harmed fearing repercussions if they are seen as informants.

Former gang member Marcellus Baz, who won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Unsung Hero Award last year, said he knew a qualified vet who stitched up knife wounds.

Mr Baz, who runs an anti-knife crime programme, told the BBC: "They've got to get healed, they've got to get stitched and they know if they go to hospital, they're going to get police involvement."

Others also worry about being implicated if something bad happens to the person who attacked them.

Marcellus Baz celebrating his award with boxer Nicola Adams - Credit: Social Media Internet

Vets are not legally permitted to prescribe medicines for humans, but are not given specific advice on whether they can treat wounds, according to the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Frontline workers dealing with gang violence said to the BBC they "know people who have paid a vet to treat a stab wound" - typically around £200.

Nathan Kelly, a youth mentor for the Nottingham School of Boxing, spoke to the broadcaster about being slashed in the face in an unprovoked attack and then lying to the emergency services.

He said: "The first thing they want to do is get the police involved.

"For me that wasn't an option because I don't want to get seen as being an informant. And you know what they say, snitches get stitches."

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