POLICE IN ‘GANG WAR’ DAWN RAIDS
SEVEN ARRESTED IN CRACKDOWN ON FEUDS:
SEVEN suspects have been arrested as part of a major investigation into potentially deadly feuds between south Manchester gangs.
It is believed rows over turf have intensified in recent months.
Three men were detained in early morning raids at addresses in Moss Side and Rusholme yesterday. Raids were also carried out in Beswick.
Another three men and a juvenile were arrested at prisons, where they were already being held on remand for other alleged offences.
All seven were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to possess firearms with intent to endanger life.
They were held under Operation Pallas, launched last year by GMP after intelligence suggested gangs were on the brink of a bloody gun war.
The force, working with the North West Regional Crime Unit, moved to nip the conflict in the bud.
The operation has already recovered four guns – a Brocock revolver, a Smith and Wesson Magnum, a Ruger SR22 pistol, and a Walther P22 self loading pistol – plus 60 rounds of ammunition, including .22 and .38 bullets.
Four stolen vehicles were recovered, as well as cloned registration plates, drugs and blades, last year.
Supt Mark Dexter, of GMP’s City of Manchester Division, said: “Today is the last part of an operation we started back in February last year.
“The main activity was in July, when we were doing investigations into nominals in Rusholme, Moss Side, Platt Fields.
“It was a mix of drug dealing, using young people, exploiting them to do the dealing for them, and drugs running. That led to a number of arrests and the recovery of firearms and ammunition.
“Since then we have been doing further investigations to pick anybody up that was involved, but we didn’t get at the time.
“We were satisfied at the time that there was a determined effort to cause harm to certain individuals. We would say that we almost certainly stopped that from happening.
“We believe there were ongoing disputes between gangs in and around Moss Side, Fallowfield, and Rusholme that were born out of turf issue encroaching on each other’s territory.
“It is our assessment that a number of those people would have been targeted by those that have been arrested, and we intervened and prevented that from happening and confiscated firearms in the process of doing that.
“It would have resulted in serious injury at the very least, if not fatalities, had we not intervened.”
The gangs involved are believed to be remnants and new versions of the old Gooch and Doddington gangs, plus new groups.
Three of those arrested were produced from Forest Bank Prison in Salford, as well as a juvenile from HM Young Offenders Institute, Werrington, in Staffordshire.
Police make an arrest after raiding homes in Moss Side, Rusholme and Beswick yesterday
Officers leaving one of the properties