Denying criminals the use of London's roads
In the tenth major day of action to deny criminals the use of London's roads, the Metropolitan Police Service have seized 536 uninsured cars, made 65 arrests including for rape, firearms offences and money laundering, and recovered two loaded firearms, crack cocaine and a large quantity of cash.
The latest Operation Cubo was carried out across London throughout Thursday, 21 June and saw hundreds of officers taking part in a co-ordinated series of operations, including road-side check points. Yesterday's seizures bring the total number of vehicles recovered since the initiative began in October last year to nearly 26,000.
And to demonstrate how the tactic is targeting criminals effectively, Thursday's arrests included:
- a man wanted for rape after he was stopped in a car by officers at a road-side check point in Wimbledon;
- two men arrested for possession of a loaded handgun after fleeing from a stopped vehicle in Greenwich;
- three men arrested in Lambeth after a shotgun and cartridges were found in the car they were travelling in was stopped for no insurance;
- two men arrested for money laundering after £20,000 cash was found in a vehicle stopped for no insurance.
- one man arrested in Redbridge for possession with intent to supply after 200 wraps of crack cocaine were found in the car he was driving after being stopped during the operation.
Operation Cubo was launched by MPS Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe eight months ago to target criminals and disrupt their activities by denying them the use of London's roads. Launching the initiative the Commissioner stated that approximately 80 per cent of uninsured drivers have a criminal record, with many actively using their vehicles to facilitate their offending. Uninsured drivers are also five times more likely to be involved in collisions and less likely to have vehicles in a roadworthy condition.
In addition to the thousands of cars seized, in the 10 big wing operations under Cubo alone, over 600 people have been arrested for a range of offences, while firearms, other weapons and large quantities cash and drugs have been recovered.
Head of Operation Cubo, Commander Steve Watson said: "The tenth Operation Cubo has achieved some outstanding results, with another huge total of vehicle seizures in just one day, and more importantly a number of arrests for some very serious offences, including rape, drugs supply, money laundering and possessing illegal firearms.
"We are targeting criminals by denying them the use of the roads so it's much harder for them to commit crime. We're also helping to make London's roads safer as uninsured drivers are more likely to have collisions and less likely to have road-worthy vehicles.
"We've also been displaying seized vehicles around London this week, such as outside town halls to show the public we are taking action against criminals. This has prompted much interest from the public who have been very supportive of the move. We're also sending a strong message to people who choose to drive without insurance: that we will seize and possibly sell or crush your vehicle.
"Over 26,000 vehicles have now been seized since we began our initiative and hundreds of criminals arrested. Cubo uses highly visible, but effective tactics that captures criminals in the act and deters their offending, while reclaiming London's roads for responsible and law-abiding drivers."