Undercover officers and ‘Al Capone’ tactics deployed as London crime epidemic stuns public
The officers, who will operate alongside highly visible uniformed ones, have been trained in behavioral science to spot any suspected criminal behavior. It comes after two deaths in Hackney, East London on Wednesday brought the total number of murders in the capital to 50.
As dozens were killed in three terrorist attacks in the city last year, and amid fears the Islamist threat is likely to worsen in the next couple of years, the officers have also been trained to prevent any terrorist from carrying out “hostile reconnaissance.”
“They are trained to detect signs displayed by people in stressful situations,” Superintendent Nick Aldworth, head of the Met’s Project Servator teams, told the Evening Standard.
“We know it works because of the positive outcomes from the operations conducted in the two pilot schemes. The idea is to deny terrorists the opportunity to carry out hostile reconnaissance.”
Meanwhile, Scotland Yard chief Cressida Dick has made her contribution to tackling London’s crime by pledging to adopt ‘Al Capone’ tactics. The tactics would be similar to those adopted against the 1930s American gangster Al Capone, who controlled Chicago’s criminal underworld and yet was only convicted of tax evasion when officers failed to connect him to the crimes he authorized.
She told the Standard the Violent Crime Task Force would work with local police to target violent individuals and known crime “hotspots.”
“We will put even more effort into bearing down on violent crime,” the Met commissioner said.
"You will see us being even more pro-active out on the streets. We will have a greater presence in the hotspots of violence and a focused effort, including intelligence-led stop-and-search and the use of specialists in covert tactics.
“We will be looking to target the people we know are the most dangerous and get the intelligence to our local officers which they can use in a fast-time way.”
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