Search

Islington police chief ‘won’t allow gangs to get a foothold’

07:03 21 October 2012

Cllr Paul Convery

Cllr Paul Convery

Archant

Two of Islington’s most senior crime-fighting figures have spoken out about the borough’s growing gang problem, some of whom “act like they are in the Godfather”.

Last week Islington’s borough commander Det Chf Sup Gerry Campbell sent an email to the borough’s politicians saying he feared a gang struggle in the light of recent arrests.

Now he has spoken to the Gazette explaining that is a worst case scenario it’s his duty to prepare for.

He said: “Obviously that is my concern, but what I have to do is plan for what is happening next, to look at possible risks in the future. I will do all I can to keep people safe. I have an absolute commitment to support total policing and a total war on crime.

“To support that, I want people to help us. If people are aware of violence in any form, come forward with information.”

In terms of the gang situation, he said: “The gang activity in Islington is different to other parts of London. The level of organised crime is just not the same.

“However, our job is preventing further gang activity and just because we have knife crime down 30 per cent and firearms crime down 35.7 per cent, we can’t be complacent.

“What I can say is our enforcement is working extremely well. We are working to identify gang members, as well as young boys and girls who can be exposed to criminal groups.

“Through peer pressure a young person can end up in a group where someone has a knife and ends up stabbing someone. Say they are killed, people’s lives and prospects could be ruined for what is tantamount to 30 seconds of sheer stupidity.”

He went on to describe a successful recent operation that saw members of the notorious EC, or Easy Cash, gang jailed for 20 years.

But he refused to be drawn on whether this meant one criminal group off the radar.

“I am not giving kudos to any particular gang or individual,” he said. “But we must not allow gang members to get a foot-hold wherever it is in the borough.’’

Meanwhile Cllr Paul Convery, Islington council’s executive member for community safety, was disparaging about the borough’s so called gangsters.

He said: “It’s like these kids have been reading Mario Puzo [author of The Godfather]. It’s pathetic. These are scruffy youths from inner London, they are not the Mafia. They think honour and respect are achieved by popping people.

“But the problem has been growing without really being confronted – it should have been tackled over the last five or six years.

“Some of these youths are moving up the ladder. Ten years ago these were little scallies delivering wraps of dope. Now they are walking around with crack and weapons, that’s worrying.”

Latest News Stories

Prince Andrew talking at Pitch@Palace

Tech City is the third-largest technology hub in the world, and it’s right on our doorstep. Each week, we bring you news from the thriving area around Old Street roundabout. This week, Victoria Ibitoye talks to Tim El-Sheikh, the founder of the bio-tech start-up Scicasts, who pitched to Prince Andrew at Pitch@Palace

Yesterday, 19:00
Rising Star: Little Simz, real name Simbi Ajikawo

Islington rapper Simbi Ajikawo, more commonly known as Little Simz, speaks to the Gazette after becoming the first independent rap artist to feature in the Forbes “30 Under 30” list.

Yesterday, 09:00
Priscilla 'Sapphira' Silcock, of Blackstock Road, Highbury, is leading a world record attempt for the biggest ever burlesque dance. She is pictured centre with Joy Flatt, left, and Justine Lamond, right

An ambitious dancer and singer from Highbury is organising a 300-strong burlesque spectacular a week today – so she can attract the attention of Sir Richard Branson.

Fri, 16:26
Labour's mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan visited Islington Bunhill Energy Centre, annoucing the creation of 'Energy for Londoners', a not-for-profit company that will take a lead on clean and green energy across the city.

Mayoral hopeful Sadiq Khan today outlined how he would address youth violence and the housing crisis in Islington.

Fri, 13:15
Caledonian Park Clock Tower, Cafe and Toilets Project - 2016 Artist's Impression

Designs have been finalised for a controversial visitor centre at the foot of the Caledonian Park clock tower – despite fierce local opposition to the plans.

Fri, 13:14
Lucy Padfield, energy services manager at Islington Council, speaks to Labour mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan outside Bunhill Energy Centre

London mayoral hopeful Sadiq Khan today visited Islington as he pledged to become the city’s “greenest ever mayor”.

Fri, 13:00
From left, Maddy Morgan and Rhiannon Faith. Photo: Roxanna Ross

Choreographer Rhiannon Faith is chatting happily on her mobile to me about her experimental performance piece.

Fri, 10:04
(Picture: Getty)

Maintenance workers on London Underground have announced a wave of strikes lasting until June in response to safety changes that they say “will lead to someone being killed”.

Most read news

Competitions

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe