Con­cern beg­gars bussed in

Uxbridge Gazette - - News - By TALIA SHADWELL Lo­cal Democ­racy Re­porter

CITY of Lon­don po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether or­gan­ised crim­i­nals are trans­port­ing beg­gars into the cap­i­tal’s Square Mile.

The force, which pa­trols the city’s fi­nan­cial and trad­ing dis­trict, con­firmed it is prob­ing whether or­gan­ised crime net­works were ex­ploit­ing beg­gars to make money for them­selves.

Com­man­der Jane Gy­ford said: “The City of Lon­don Po­lice are cur­rently in the process of un­der­stand­ing whether there are any oc­cur­rences of or­gan­ised crime groups util­is­ing beg­gars to make money in the Square Mile by of­fer­ing to trans­port them to the City and back at times when the city is most busy.

“The in­ves­ti­ga­tion into this is still in its early stages. How­ever, we have a ded­i­cated vul­ner­a­bil­ity team within our com­mu­nity polic­ing unit and we also work closely with the City of Lon­don Cor­po­ra­tion Out­reach Team who en­gage proac­tively with all the beg­gars and rough sleep­ers in the City and work along­side so­cial ser­vices, hous­ing and a num­ber of char­i­ties.”

The con­fir­ma­tion of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion comes af­ter the sus­pi­cion was hinted at by top brass at­tend­ing a City of Lon­don po­lice per­for­mance meet­ing on Thurs­day April 26.

Assistant Com­mis­sioner Alis­tair Suther­land told the com­mit­tee po­lice in­tel­li­gence re­ports sug­gested some of the beg­gars in the City were be­ing planted there by or­gan­ised crim­i­nals.

It has been claimed that beg­gars are be­ing dropped off in the City of Lon­don by or­gan­ised crim­i­nals

A re­port to the com­mit­tee showed po­lice were re­ceiv­ing con­tin­u­ing re­ports of rough sleep­ers block­ing door­ways and fire ex­its in the Square Mile.

Home­less­ness sup­port char­i­ties and City of Lon­don’s out­reach pro­gramme have been ap­proached for com­ment.

It has been claimed beg­gars are be­ing dropped off in the City of Lon­don by or­gan­ised crim­i­nals

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