‘CRIMINALS WE ARE COMING AFTER YOU’
Home Secretary Priti Patel pledges new crackdown on the crime blighting Britain’s streets
HOME Secretary Priti Patel will today warn law breakers: “We are coming after you!”
At the Tory conference in Manchester, Ms Patel, inset, will unveil a £10million plan to arm police with Tasers and crack down on “county lines” drug gangs. Longer jail terms for murderers and rapists will also show the Conservatives are still the party of law and
order. In her uncompromising conference speech, the senior Cabinet minister will declare an end to soft-touch policing and launch a nationwide fight against crime.
Her rallying cry to the Tory faithful is intended to show that crimefighting has moved on from David Cameron’s “hug-ahoodie” approach.
The Home Secretary has also told allies she is determined to provide “genuine leadership” to the country’s frontline police officers after the “indecisive” stewardship of Theresa May.
Ms Patel is expected to tell the Tory conference that she will unequivocally back bobbies on the beat as the Home Office drive to recruit 20,000 more officers gathers pace.
She will also declare that the time has come for the Tories to reclaim their traditional reputation as a general election looms. She will say: “Margaret Thatcher knew that if you made the British people your compass, if you took time to understand their lives and their priorities, your direction would always be true.”
The Home Secretary, who comes from a family of Ugandan Asians, will also draw on her own heritage. She will say: “This daughter of immigrants needs no lectures from the north London metropolitan liberal elite on how our country is enriched by – and better for – being internationalist.
“So, as we renew our place as the party of law and order in Britain, let the message go out from this hall today.
“To the British people, we hear you. To the police service, we back you. And to the criminals, I simply say this: we are coming after you.”
Ms Patel – who squeezed an extra £400million out of the Treasury to make good on Boris Johnson’s pledge to hire 20,000 more police officers – will focus her speech on giving officers stun guns.
Earlier this week, she said: “I’ve been completely appalled by the recent spate of serious assaults on police officers, which is why I’m giving chief constables the resources to dramatically increase the number of their officers who carry Tasers.”
She will also signal a major offensive against the “county lines” gangs that recruit youngsters to take drugs from major towns and cities to rural communities across the country.
Ms Patel, who took over at the Home Office in July, is understood to have been appalled by the previous culture of waste and inaction in the department.
She believes complacency and a PC attitude to law enforcement set in under former PM Tony Blair.
Ms Patel has now ordered root-and-branch reviews of procedures throughout the department in an attempt to return to the no-nonsense policing of the Thatcher era in the 1980s.
Getting tough...Priti Patel