Olivia Pratt-Korbel killing: More than 200 arrests across Merseyside in crackdown on organised crime

·3-min read

More than 200 people have now been arrested as part of an operation by Merseyside Police to crack down on organised crime.

Dozens of raids have been carried out by officers in the past week as they continue to appeal for help in finding the gunman who killed nine-year-old Olivia Pratt-Korbel in the Dovecot area of Liverpool.

The schoolgirl was fatally shot inside her own home last Monday, becoming the third person on Merseyside to lose their lives to gun violence in a week.

Sam Rimmer, 22, was killed in a drive-by shooting in the Dingle area on 16 August, while 28-year-old Ashley Dale died in the back garden of a house in Old Swan on 21 August. She was not believed to have been the intended victim.

Merseyside Police said in the last 24 hours its officers have detained 32 more people under Operation Miller, taking the total number of arrests to 202, as the force's "relentless pursuit of those involved in organised crime continues at pace".

A further 66 stop searches have been carried out, along with 11 warrants being executed, and eight vehicles seized.

Police previously said 58 warrants were executed in locations across Liverpool, Knowsley and St Helens.

'We are not going anywhere'

Detective Chief Superintendent Mark Kameen, who is head of investigations, said: "If you are involved in serious organised crime on Merseyside we are not going anywhere soon and we will continue to disrupt the criminality you are involved in.

"The communities of Dovecot, Old Swan and Dingle are still reeling from the murders that have taken place in the areas they call home and we owe it to them to stop those involved in serious organised crime, which can result in innocent members of our communities being seriously injured or killed."

He said the force's resources have been "significantly boosted" by officers from across the UK - investigation, firearms and uniformed - and "we will leave no stone unturned" in the search for the killers of the three victims.

'Information continues to come in'

Det Ch Supt Kameen added that information from communities in relation to the murders continues to come in and "we are acting on all the information we receive".

Police have insisted that "silence is not an option" and in a video appeal on Twitter on Sunday, the Merseyside force warned that anyone withholding information must give it up.

During the clip, a voiceover states: "We've got parents who've lost their children.

"We've got a nine-year-old girl who won't celebrate her 18th birthday. She won't celebrate her wedding. She won't have children of her own.

"If you've got information and you're withholding it, you're protecting the killers. We need your information. Provide that information to us and we'll do the rest."

The force said anyone with information can contact them via social media or by calling 101.

CCTV, dashcam, and smart doorbell footage can be submitted online via mipp.police.uk.

Over the weekend, police investigating Olivia's killing released on bail two men who had been arrested and questioned on suspicion of murder and two counts of attempted murder.

They were a 36-year-old man from Huyton and a 33-year-old man from Dovecot. The 36-year-old has been recalled to prison after breaching the terms of his licence.