London has experienced again the annual Notting Hill Carnival, which went ahead on Sunday and Monday after hundreds of arrests.
Over 650 individuals were held in the days leading up to the carnival, with special bail restrictions applied to high-risk individuals, effectively banning them from returning to the Notting Hill area during carnival days.
A further 150 people were arrested on the first day of the festival, Sunday, which were predominantly for drug offenses. There were also eight arrested for possession of a weapon, ten for common assault, nine for public order, nine for sexual offenses, and six for assaults on a police officer, reports GetWestLondon.
Yet arrests were significantly down on Monday compared to the preceding year, with just 25 arrests made Monday morning. There were 245 arrests made during the whole of Monday in the 2016 Carnival, which is generally known as the more lawless of the two days.
The apparent fall of arrests may vindicate the Metropolitan Police’s policy of cracking down on drug gangs and known troublemakers before the carnival, which has earned scorn on social media and among some celebrities, including from Grime artist Stormzy, reports The Guardian.
The carnival has seen a number of murders in recent years, and the London Police’s senior officer in command over the weekend said of the arrests: “I don’t really care what we arrest them for, I’ll be [as] lawfully audacious as I can to get them off the streets.
“So whether they’ve got heroin or they’ve got other class A drugs, [are] drug dealing, [or] serious violence takes place at carnival, we will try to target them and get them off the streets.”
Officers were searching revelers as they entered the carnival area, looking for weapons and acid after months of surging assaults in the city with corrosive substances. Two were injured Sunday evening in an acid attack, which led to a panicked crowd in the adjacent area to flee in terror, reports the Daily Star.
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