Operation Sceptre: Met seize nearly 300 knives in crackdown

·1-min read
The Metropolitan Police seized nearly 300 knives and arrested almost 1,000 people in a week-long crackdown on violent crime (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Archive)
The Metropolitan Police seized nearly 300 knives and arrested almost 1,000 people in a week-long crackdown on violent crime (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Archive)

The Met says it seized nearly 300 knives and arrested almost 1,000 people in a week-long crackdown - amid concern 2021 could be a record year for teenage homicides.

Officers described Operation Sceptre as an “intensification” of their existing knife crime prevention efforts, saying they conducted patrols in violence hotspots and carried out increased weapons sweeps.

The force says it carried out 937 arrests and 2,745 weapon sweeps.

But the effort comes amid a spate of confirmed teenage homicides, with 28 teenagers killed on the capital’s streets so far in 2021 - one away from 2008’s peak of 29 teen killings.

On Thursday morning police launched a murder investigation after a 16-year-old boy was fatally stabbed in a quiet residential road in Hounslow.

Police were called to the stabbing in Raleigh Road, Southall, shortly after 9pm. Footage appeared to show officers attempting to save the boy’s life in a front garden.

His next-of-kin have been informed and formal identification awaits.

Officers have also renewed an appeal for information in the death of stabbed 14-year-old Jermaine Cools a week ago, who was attacked near West Croydon station.

Superintendent Jim Corbett, who led Operation Sceptre for the Met, said: “Knife crime completely destroys victims, families and communities, which is why tackling it is our top priority.

“Officers will continue doing everything they can to target those intent on committing violent crime on our streets, to make London safer.

“Suppressing violence needs a holistic approach to deliver long-lasting solutions.

“We must all work together – the responsibility lies with us all to create safe communities.”

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