PO­LICE IN ‘GANG WAR’ DAWN RAIDS

SEVEN AR­RESTED IN CRACK­DOWN ON FEUDS:

Manchester Evening News - - FRONT PAGE - By NEAL KEEL­ING

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

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