Police arrest 62 in dawn raids before London’s Notting Hill Carnival weekend

© Olivia Harris
More than 1,000 police officers across London have made 62 arrests and seized a firearm, drugs and cash as part of an operation to crackdown on gang crime and drugs ahead of the city’s annual Notting Hill Carnival.

Officers seized one handgun from an address in Tower Hamlets, along with gloves and gaffer tape. 

The operation, which took place throughout Tuesday, involved officers from all Metropolitan Police boroughs, as well as specialist units from Task Force, Trident and Area Crime Command, Operation Teal, Safer Neighborhoods, Dog Units and Roads Policing.

The arrests were predominantly made for drug offences, including possession with intent to supply. There were also arrests made for public order offences and violent crime.

In an attempt to make the upcoming Notting Hill Carnival safer, those who have been arrested may be bailed but will have conditions that prevent them attending the carnival.

Officers will also be patrolling the carnival to look for anyone banned from the event.

“Today’s operation is aimed at ensuring that those who intend to cause trouble at Carnival are prohibited from doing so. We are committed to ensuring that Carnival remains a safe, vibrant and enjoyable event; troublemakers are not welcome,” said Superintendent Robyn Williams, the Met’s spokesman for policing the Notting Hill Carnival. 

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Inspector Bill Duffy of the City of London Police added they were trying to make the carnival as safe as possible.

“Preventing crime at Carnival by taking action beforehand helps to ensure that the event is enjoyed by as many Londoners as possible,” Duffy said.

“The City of London Police is happy to work in partnership with the Metropolitan Police and play our part to ensure the best of London is showcased in this globally recognized event.”

Chief Superintendent Ellie O'Connor, Borough Commander of Kensington & Chelsea, said it was important to ensure the event was well policed for local residents.

Carnival is a fantastic event with visitors to the borough from around the world,” she said. “I do recognize that Carnival has a massive impact on the lives of local residents and we are committed to supporting the local community and businesses as much as possible. Today's operation will help ensure that known troublemakers will not attend Carnival, ensuring a quicker return to normality for local residents.”

Officers from across the capital are also involved in over 550 activities which will aim to disrupt potential crime at the carnival, including weapons sweeps and patrols in areas where gangs are known to operate.