Af­ter 18 ar­rests, of­fi­cers vow to con­tinue raves crack­down

Burton Mail - - News - By JENNY MOODY jen­nifer.moody@reach­ @Jen­ny_­moody85

PO­LICE have promised to con­tinue to crack down on il­le­gal raves across Stafford­shire af­ter 18 ar­rests were made last month.

This in­cludes ar­rests at one in Brookhay Lane, Fradley, near the A38, on June 13, where ap­prox­i­mately 1,000 peo­ple turned up.

Those at­tend­ing were dis­persed by of­fi­cers, with many more be­ing chal­lenged and turned way.

Chief Su­per­in­ten­dent Carl Rat­cliffe, head of con­tact and response at Stafford­shire Po­lice, is lead­ing the op­er­a­tion. He said of­fi­cers were con­tin­u­ing to gather in­tel­li­gence to pre­vent il­le­gal raves.

He ap­pealed to mem­bers of the pub­lic to share any in­for­ma­tion they had and said fur­ther ar­rests were likely.

On June 20, of­fi­cers made 13 ar­rests in con­nec­tion with a planned rave near Chase­wa­ter and three more ar­rests were made in re­la­tion to a planned rave near Ruge­ley the fol­low­ing week­end.

Chief Supt Rat­cliffe said: “I’m urg­ing any­one who is con­sid­er­ing at­tend­ing an il­le­gal rave to stop and think about the con­se­quences.

“I un­der­stand that lock­down is be­ing eased but these un­law­ful gath­er­ings can­not take place.

“We are aware that there are pos­si­ble fur­ther il­le­gal raves be­ing or­gan­ised in Stafford­shire.

“We have a con­tin­u­ing, ded­i­cated polic­ing op­er­a­tion in place, with a much higher po­lice pres­ence in po­ten­tial hot spot ar­eas.”

Chief Supt Rat­cliffe said coro­n­avirus con­tin­ued to be a ma­jor risk, but urged peo­ple not to at­tend the events as they are il­le­gal and un­safe.

He said: “We will in­ter­vene in in­ci­dents and seek to pros­e­cute any­one who has taken part in any il­le­gal ac­tiv­ity – whether that be drug sup­ply or pub­lic dis­or­der and any vi­o­lence.

“I would also like to send a re­ally clear mes­sage to or­gan­is­ers of il­le­gal raves – we will deal with you ro­bustly and you will be ar­rested.

“Please se­ri­ously con­sider the risks and ask your­self if it’s worth it. We want to warn young peo­ple of the sig­nif­i­cant risks posed by such events and keep our com­mu­ni­ties safe.

“To those think­ing about at­tend­ing such events, you could face en­force­ment ac­tion and re­ceive a crim­i­nal record. Do not go to il­le­gal raves and risk your lives.

“I’m also call­ing on the pub­lic to help us – if you have any in­tel­li­gence or hear about an event tak­ing place, please get in touch with us so we can pre­vent it and ul­ti­mately save lives.

“The key to stop­ping these events is early in­tel­li­gence.”

Any­one who sus­pects a rave is be­ing set up is urged to con­tact Stafford­shire Po­lice via Face­book or Twitter, by call­ing 101 or con­tact­ing Crimestop­pers anony­mously on 0800 555 111.

Ve­hi­cles left aban­doned at the scene of the il­le­gal rave near Fradley last month. Stafford­shire Po­lice con­tinue to gather in­tel­li­gence to pre­vent sim­i­lar il­le­gal gath­er­ings in the county

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