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Cops warn teenage girls in London against carrying guns

PUBLISHED: 19:00 30 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:58 05 October 2010

TEENAGE girls are being warned by cops against storing and carrying guns for others in a hard-hitting campaign unveiled today by the Met Police. The four-week drive is in response to a rise in teenage girls arrested and convicted for possessing weapons in London’s Black community

By Mike Brooke

TEENAGE girls are being warned by cops against storing and carrying guns for others in a hard-hitting campaign unveiled today by the Met Police.

The four-week drive is in response to a rise in teenage girls arrested and convicted for possessing weapons in London's Black community.

Ads are appearing in cinemas and on radio, billboards and bus-stop posters, aimed at girls aged 15 to 19.

The Met's Trident unit, which investigates shootings in the Black community, is targeting six 'priority' areas where gun crime is rife such as Hackney in East London, as well as Haringey, Brent, Lewisham, Southwark and Lambeth.

"Those who store and carry guns for others are partly responsible for the crimes committed with those weapons," warned Det Chief Supt Helen Ball, head of Trident.

"The consequences for them, their families and their friends are not worth thinking about. If found guilty of gun possession, they face prison."

A total of 46 women and girls have been charged with possessing firearms in the past five years, Scotland Yard shock figures show.

So far this year, 12 women have been charged with firearms possession, including seven teenagers.

Trident's independent advisory group chair Claudia Webbe said: "Vulnerable teenagers are sometimes pressed into storing or carrying guns by men they know, or sometimes do so willingly. It is vital that we act to prevent more girls becoming involved."

Crimestoppers features in the campaign, urging anyone with information about gun crime to call anonymously on 0800-555111.


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