Two arrested and weapons seized as stop and search powers extended in Strangeways area
Main article content
We have authorised the extension of stop and search powers in the Strangeways area of Manchester until the evening of Christmas Eve, after two arrests and weapons were seized in response to recent incidents of violent disorder.
The section 60 powers under the 1994 Criminal Justice and Public Order Act will now run for an additional six hours until 9pm tonight (Friday 24 December).
This will coincide with the end of a Dispersal Order that was introduced at 3pm yesterday (Thursday 23 December) and has allowed our officers to require people to leave the area in the event of anti-social behaviour, or face arrest if they refuse.
Since the introduction of the powers yesterday afternoon, two men have been arrested - one of whom is being held after a meat cleaver was found by officers who stopped a man on Bury New Road.
Police patrolling the area have also found and seized a metal pole that is understood to have been deliberately hidden inside a bin.
A second man has been taken to custody after we found he was wanted for failing to appear at court when accused of violent disorder and assault.
He was remanded in custody and appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates' Court earlier today.
The disruption tactics were introduced following multiple incidents of violent disorder over the past couple of weeks including an incident on Wednesday (22 December) evening, which saw a man injured after reports of a group of men during a large-scale fight involving machetes back in November.
Following the incident, Agha Rahimi 28, of no fixed abode, was arrested and has since been charged with possession of a bladed article and two counts of possession with intent to supply class C drugs.
He also appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates' Court today.
We will continue to have a visible presence in the area beyond the conclusion of tonight's additional powers, and are keen to thank the public for the information they have given to us so far that we are acting on.
Superintendent Helen Critchley, of GMP's City of Manchester North division, said: "The threshold to implement a Section 60 power is high and bringing these powers into place is not a decision we take lightly, but we know after 24 hours of these specialist tactics being in place that it is having the desired impact.
"We have made two arrests and seized two offensive weapons from the streets, and we are satisfied that it is necessary for us to continue with this authority to prevent any further serious violence.
"This area is particularly busy in the lead up to Christmas and following incidents of serious violence in the vicinity we feel it absolutely necessary to implement to ensure our communities are kept safe.
"I would like to thank the public for their support since we introduced these powers and I appeal to them to continue coming forwards with information that is allowing us to take the necessary action to disrupt and dismantle those individuals that have been involved in bringing unacceptable disorder to our streets."
Anyone with information can contact police online, if able, or via 101. Always dial 999 in an emergency.
Details can be passed to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.