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Saturday, 13 October 2007

100 "suitcase sized" nuclear weapons are unaccounted for.

retired General Alexander Lebed, former secretary of the Russian Security Council, told the CBS news program "60 Minutes" that he believes more than 100 "suitcase sized" nuclear weapons are unaccounted for. Lebed's charge elicited an immediate response from several senior Russian government officials, including Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, who denied the existence of these weapons—known in the West as atomic demolition munitions (ADMs)—and argued that the Russian arsenal remains safe and secure. The State Department also reiterated its strong confidence in Russia's command and control system. Lebed's account is detailed in a new book, One Point Safe, by journalists Andrew and Leslie Cockburn.

2005 stolen firearms

Court records showed Kenneth Wayne Cashwell and William Ellsworth Grumiaux pleaded guilty earlier in the year to possessing, receiving and concealing between May 2003 and August 2005 stolen firearms which had been "shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce".

The records, which showed both men agreed to cooperate with authorities and testify about any crimes they knew of in plea deals filed last November,

unlicensed weapons and equipment

Federal prosecutors are investigating whether staff from controversial US security company Blackwater smuggled weapons to Iraq, according to reports.
Some employees are alleged to have sent over unlicensed weapons and equipment, that could have been used by a group labelled as terrorist by the US.

The North Carolina-based firm said it was not aware of such an investigation.

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

stun gun use

The National Criminal Intelligence Service, which is planning to launch an investigation into stun gun use, said this rise could partly be attributed to evidence that ordinary people and businessmen were buying them in France and Thailand, where they are legal, and bringing them back to the UK.

report on gun crime commissioned by the Home Office

Illegal firearms have become increasingly accessible to younger offenders who appear more likely to use these firearms recklessly,” a report on gun crime commissioned by the Home Office cautioned last year.

2,710 handguns known as HS95s which were smuggled out of Croatia in the late 90s

mayhem that can be caused by a single batch of illegal weapons was demonstrated by a study of 2,710 handguns known as HS95s which were smuggled out of Croatia in the late 90s. One was used to shoot Derek Dunne, an Irish gangster, in the neck after he opened the door to his Amsterdam home in January 2000. In May the following year another weapon from the same consignment was wielded by the Basque gunman who assassinated Manuel Giménez Abad, a Spanish politician, in Madrid.

909 firearms last year along with 61,867 rounds of ammunition.

When police moved in, they found that Cinga had sold 18 Baikal IZH-79s pistols to the pair. Each came with a silencer and 20 rounds of ammunition. Banking records showed that Smith had transferred around £2,500 to Lithuania before his arrest.

At Blackfriars crown court yesterday, Cinga, 34, was jailed for seven years and Smith, 47, for 10½. The sentencing of Magee, 43, was adjourned.

Officers from Operation Trident, the Scotland Yard unit set up nine years ago to reduce shootings and murders among black men in particular, seized 909 firearms last year along with 61,867 rounds of ammunition. In one raid on a suburban semi opposite a school in Dartford, Kent, they are alleged to have found hundreds of firearms mounted on every available stretch of wall space. Further seizures were made around London by police who are not members of the 300-strong Trident team, as well as by other police forces. Customs officers, meanwhile, intercepted 762 firearms and 7,407 rounds being smuggled into the UK last year. They often discovered the firearms had been parcelled up with consignments of drugs. Police believe that eastern Europe - particularly the Baltic states - are the source of many of the illegal firearms in the UK.

Guns are being smuggled into the UK using online auction sites such as eBay

Guns are being smuggled into the UK using online auction sites such as eBay, according to a report by MPs due out this week.

Although the sale of weapons is illegal on eBay, the report is expected to say that villains are getting round the barriers by buying component parts, such as barrels, firing mechanism and triggers.

According to the Sunday Times, which has seen a copy of the report, the committee of MPs is to call on the Government to take action.

The paper quotes the report as saying: "This loophole is a potential route for illicit weapons into the UK and should be addressed."

You can buy one for £50 or £70 with a load of ammunition

The smuggling of the weapons, some of which he said were manufactured in India and China, others sold in Eastern Europe, was made easier due to easier communications and international travel connections.

Mr Gray, who has written the book Armed Response about his experiences in the Met, described Britain's borders as "porous to say the least".

"Buying weapons in Europe and bringing them into England is not really a problem, bringing them in to the Kent Cinq Ports is even less of a problem," Mr Gray said.

"It is very easy," he added

Mr Gray said he believed the extent gun crime was being "underplayed" in Britain.

He said "The number of weapons that are in criminal hands I would suggest has gone up enormously."

And Mr Gray said nowadays, on the streets of a city like Manchester it could be possible to get hold of a gun within hours: "If you were a member of a certain fraternity and of a certain age group I don't think you would have trouble getting one at all. Within an hour, I suspect, if you were in touch with the right people."

Mr Gray even said he thought it was possible Kalashnikov AK47 assualt rifles could be making their way into this country.

"In places like India, we have village craftsmen who can clone a Kalashnikov assault rifle very efficiently. India, China all over the place.

"The Kalashnikov is one of the most lethal weapons in the world, but it is also commonly available."

Mr Gray said he believed gun crime in the UK was spiralling: "Gun crime in general is rising, it is out of control. I believe the public do not have a full picture of what is going on nor the extent of it."

He said the weapons were available for under £100, along with bullets.

"You can buy one for £50 or £70 with a load of ammunition, I understand. Guns have been made for the past two centuries, there are loads of them out there," he revealed.

Mr Gray was not hopeful for the future of cracking down on gun crime, despite the Government's proposed Violent Crime Bill, saying Brits would have to learn to live with it.

"I don’t think we are going to be able to stamp it out I think we are going to have to live with it," he said.

"It is very difficult for the British public to digest what they are now faced with, but they have no choice.

"It will never be possible to train enough armed policemen, let alone recruit them to deal with the problem as it is now. The resources required are absolutely enormous and our society would change

“What we’re seeing is the emergence of this, and a whole series of undesirable things emerging from new media,”

Three Scottish teenagers from Glasgow’s Xcross gang put a video on YouTube in which they gloated over the killing of a 21-year-old father.

In the film they threaten another man - called Jinky - with the same punishment: “Jinky, wee man, get back to Norfy [a tower on a local council estate] before we murder ye like Willie Smith, ye dafty, do you want to get put in a box an’ all?”

Caught by the police, the three stars of the disturbing internet movie pleaded guilty to culpable homicide last week, allowing the story of their online bragging to be told. Plastered all over the Scottish newspapers last week, it is hardly surprising that the shock that such videos exist have begun to lead to calls for better regulation of the video-sharing website.

In the past fortnight MPs have queued up to criticise YouTube in an attempt to look tough on law and order, in response to the spate of gun crime. As a result, John Whittingdale, who chairs the Commons Culture Select Committee, is considering a public enquiry into the topic.

“What we’re seeing is the emergence of this, and a whole series of undesirable things emerging from new media,” Mr Whittingdale said. “There are also concerns about cyber-bullying and about the use by some Islamic fundamentalist groups of some pretty appalling websites.”

Don't blow your life away - Trident launches hard-hitting new advertising campaign

targeting 13 to 19 year olds in a bid to dissuade them from becoming the gunmen of the future.

Trident launched a powerful advertising campaign targeting 13 to 19 year olds in a bid to dissuade them from becoming the gunmen of the future.

The campaign features radio and TV ad’s produced from real prisoners views to bring the message home: "Don’t blow your life away."

Magnum pistols bought for £400

The street talk was of Magnum pistols bought for £400, of replica firearms which sell for £50 and can be converted to fire bullets retailing at £1 a time. The talk is chilling because it seems so incongruous on tree-lined suburban streets on a warm August afternoon. Then someone tells you to take a look at YouTube.

Two grainy films, crude but terrifying, mirror each other, each beginning with the street sign for their precious turf and moving on to show guns, dogs, cars and motorbikes. The Crockys get to the point swiftly with a picture of a heavy weapon, followed by shots of a revolver with its chamber open, a sawn-off shotgun and a handgun with an ammunition clip. The pictures of the arsenal are interwoven with footage of wheelies on a trail bike, pit bull terriers and a circling quad bike.

People are being warned of a new threat from organised crime gangs

People are being warned of a new threat from organised crime gangs, many of them from Romania, who are targeting cash machines and stealing millions of pounds each year.

The crooks are using pinhole cameras, card skimmers and other gadgets to obtain personal identification numbers, card details and in many cases the cards themselves, from customers.

Detective Inspector Roger Cook, head of the City of London Police's Cheque and Credit Card Unit, said cash machine fraud had cost the banks more than £30m so far this year.

He said the gangs - some of which are also involved in human trafficking and prostitution - were becoming more and more sophisticated and were spreading out across the UK.

London's gang culture has identified 169 separate groups

A police report on London's gang culture has identified 169 separate groups, with more than a quarter said to have been involved in murders.
Gangs are responsible for more than a fifth of youth crime in London, according to the Metropolitan Police report seen by BBC London.

The unpublished report found that nearly half of London gangs had been involved in serious assault.

Three teenagers have died in shootings in south London in two weeks.

The largest number of gangs are said to be in Hackney, east London (22 gangs); Enfield in north London (13); Lambeth and Merton in south London (12 gangs each); Waltham Forest in north east London (11) and Brent in north west London (11).

Gangs were found to have around 20 to 30 members, and to commit crimes in smaller groups of three to six.

It's definitely a war out there

Former gang leader

African-Caribbean gangs were described as the largest group, followed by south Asian and white gangs.

Religion was also found to be a defining factor, with some gangs comprising solely Muslim or Catholic members, for example.

The report distinguished between 19 gangs considered responsible for a high level of harm and 29 regarded as using a medium level.

A former gang leader said some young people became gang members in order to feel protected.

"They feel safe within a gang because you have got older people in the gang who are always going to look after you," he said.

"You are always moving as a pack. It's as you fight in a war.

"If you are fighting in a war you are not going to send just one soldier out. It's definitely a war out there."

Impact 'enormous'

Criminologist Dr John Pitts, from the University of Bedfordshire, said: "There are probably no more than 1,500 to 2,000 young people in gangs in all of London, but their impact is enormous."

Dr Pitts said the influence of gangs could determine which schools and colleges young people felt able to go to.

"There are quite a number of youth workers in London boroughs who are finding it impossible to run a service," he added.

Fifteen-year-old Billy Cox is the latest victim of violence blamed on gangs.

There does seem to be evidence of a rise in the number of gangs

Metropolitan Police Commander Paul Minton

He was shot in the chest at the family home in Clapham, south London.

third fatal shooting of a teenager in south London in less than two weeks

The Metropolitan Police commissioner, Sir Ian Blair, has held an emergency meeting after the third fatal shooting of a teenager in south London in less than two weeks.

join a gang or participate in gang delinquency

A new study confirms that parental behavior can affect how likely teenagers are to join a gang or participate in gang delinquency.
But the study also reveals that the same behaviors that discourage gang activity in teens from one ethnic group might have no effect, or even encourage gang activity, in teens from a different ethnic group.

The same research indicates that gang intervention programs, which often focus on teens' peer relationships, could be more effective if they also addressed the parent-teen relationship.

Teen Gang and Gang Violence has taken on a new light in today's age.

Gangs prey on the weak child that yearns to fit in with a false illusion they are accepted into the “cool crowd”. With most Gangs as with Teen Cults, they can convince your child that joining "their Gang or Cult" will make them a "well-liked and popular" teen as well as one that others may fear. This gives the teen a false sense of superiority. Remember, many of today’s teens that are acting out negatively are suffering with extremely low self confidence. This feeling of power that they believe a gang or cult has can boost their esteem; however they are blinded to the fact that is dangerous. This is how desperate some teens are to fit in.

In reality, it is a downward spiral that can result in damage both emotionally and psychically. We have found Teen Gangs and Teen Cults are sometimes hard to detect. They disguise themselves to impress the most intelligent of parents. We have witnessed Gang members who will present themselves as the "good kid from the good family" and you would not suspect their true colors.
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