Full FORCE of the Law! Met Police’s brutal takedown of moped thugs is captured in incredible dashcam and helicopter videos
- Met Police officers clamping down on moped criminals with specialist tactics
- Officers are now allowed to carry out ‘tactical contact’ manoeuvres on riders
- Comes after the number of thieves using scooters to target pedestrians rose
- However the new tactics have seen moped offences drop by half since 2017
Newly-released footage reveals how London’s police officers are fighting back against the capital’s moped menace.
Video caught from police helicopters and ground vehicles show how officers are clamping down on moped offenders with specialist tactics including ramming.
In one video, two offenders on a scooter are speeding through central London before they are sent crashing onto the bonnet of an intercepting police car.
More footage shows motorcycle-mounted officers chasing down crook Konna Ward through north London, until he too is sent flying after he is rammed by officers.
Officers across England and Wales are now allowed to carry out ‘tactical contact’ manoeuvres on moped riders, a move that was criticised by Labour’s Diane Abbott.
Police first began using their cars to stop suspected criminals in November 2018, after the number of thieves using scooters to target pedestrians rose dramatically.
In one video, two offenders on a scooter are speeding through central London before they are sent crashing onto the bonnet of an intercepting police car
Since then the spate of offenders using mopeds in the capital has dropped from 20,973, between June 2017 and July 2018, to just 9,723 in the year until June 2019.
Footage shows Konna Ward, 21, as he is chased down by police on February 4 after officers spotted his stolen scooter.
He was later convicted of several offences, including riding while disqualified, aggravated vehicle taking, failing to stop, a racially aggravated public order offence, no insurance and possession with intent to supply cannabis.
Moped crime first surged in 2017, with criminals using scooters to target pedestrians by snatching phones before making quick getaways on London’s crowded streets.
Some moped robbers have hit 30 victims in one hour alone, with those coming out of tube stations seen as an easy target.
Police officers have also been injured by thieves riding directly into them.
Scotland Yard was previously frustrated in catching the criminals, who often discarded their helmets to discourage officers from chasing them.
But now if a criminal is speeding away from their victim a specialised member of the force can follow them and use their car to tip them over.
Video caught from police helicopters and ground vehicles show how officers are clamping down on moped offenders with specialist tactics including ramming
More footage shows motorcycle-mounted officers chasing down crook Konna Ward through north London, until he too is sent flying after he is rammed by officers (shown)
In 2018, Commander Amanda Pearson, of the Met’s front-line policing unit, said the approach was needed to stop dangerous chases.
A year later the tactics appear to be working – with fewer thefts of mopeds, scooters and motorcycles as a result.
Between July 2017 and June 2018 there were 11,395 bike thefts, which has since fallen by 22.4 per cent, to 8,847 between July 2018 and June 2019.
What is police guidance on ‘tactical contact’?
Police said guidance on the use of vehicles in stopping mopeds is similar to that surrounding the use of force by officers on foot.
Officers are told they can only use force when it is ‘absolutely necessary, reasonable and proportionate’.
Police car drivers have to keep this in mind when deciding whether to crash into a fleeing moped mugger.
Whereas police may have been more reluctant to chase robbers without helmets in previous years, the spike in moped crime has concentrated the minds of Scotland Yard chiefs.
More training for ‘scorpion’ drivers and the increasingly dangerous tactics used by muggers has led to the method being more widely used.
Victims of the spate of incidents included ex chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne and comedian Michael McIntyre, who was robbed of his Rolex by two men on a moped while parked outside his children’s school.
The 12-strong group were jailed for a total of 68 years after carrying out a series of high profile raids across the capital.
The Met says it only uses the tactic as a last resort to stop muggers who are a risk to pedestrians or putting police in danger.
Last year, a gang of moped thieves exposed by BGT judge Amanda Holden for threatening to snatch a toddler were jailed for a total of 68 years.
The 12-strong mob carried out a series of high-profile raids around the capital – even trying to steal TV cameras from bridges on the university boat race route – before making off on mopeds.
Ms Holden got involved after four gang members were caught on CCTV targeting her neighbour, Pheobe Ruele, as she walked her little son home from nursery last summer.
Bearded gang ringleader Terry Marsh, along with Steven Weller, John McFadyen and his brother Isaac, tried to rob Miss Reule in the middle of the road, demanding ‘give me your rings or I’m going to hurt your child’.
They were spotted by a group of builders who chased them off brandishing scaffold poles.
Police began using their cars to stop suspected criminals in July 2018, after the number of thieves using scooters to target pedestrians rose dramatically (file image)
The method was previously criticised by Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott
The gang were finally rounded up following another raid, after a 90-minutes chase through 10 London boroughs, which ended when one pair slid off their bike while trying to take a corner at high speed.
All four were jailed at Kingston Crown Court, along with six other members of the 12-strong gang who were also responsible for a string of high profile raids across London. Two were spared jail.
The gang were behind the theft of £170,000 of camera equipment used to film the Oxford and Cambridge boat race.
Nine of the 12 had racked up 383 previous convictions for burglaries, handling stolen goods, car theft, aggravated vehicle taking, assault and robberies between them. The other three men had no previous criminal records.
Taking the criminals off the streets has helped cut moped crime in the capital by 52 per cent in a year, the Metropolitan Police claim.
Dedicated Met police officer who faced TWO YEARS of hell after he took down a moped mugger
Police driver Edwin Sutton faced disciplinary procedures after he caused a crash with a suspected moped bandit he was chasing.
He was accused of driving his vehicle into the path of a moped being ridden by a 17-year-old in South London in May 2017.
The teenager was not seriously hurt.
PC Edwin Sutton (right) receives a long-service award in 2011 from Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson
But he endured a two year ordeal, despite the Met Police hailing the robust tactic for reducing crime.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct recommended gross misconduct proceedings against PC Sutton who could have been fired if the case was proven.
Met Police Federation chairman Ken Marsh said: ‘What message does this case send? We believe this officer acted within guidelines, but is being fed to the wolves. It’s not right.’
He was finally cleared of any wrongdoing last month.
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