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More spy cameras are uncovered to keep watch on street yobs

PUBLISHED: 23:41 14 April 2009 | UPDATED: 14:16 05 October 2010

Shadowy figures monitor growing number of surveillance CCTV

Shadowy figures monitor growing number of surveillance CCTV

A NETWORK of spy cameras has been installed on a notorious housing estate in London’s crime-ridden East End in the battle against rising street violence. The cameras were unwrapped on the Chicksand Estate in Spitalfields, a neighbourhood rife with yob culture. They are part of a mushrooming blanket of 250 operating round-the-clock across the East End

By Alex Steger

A NETWORK of spy cameras has been installed on a notorious housing estate in London’s crime-ridden East End in the battle against rising street violence.

The 12 cameras were unwrapped on the Chicksand Estate in Spitalfields and the surrounding streets, a neighbourhood rife with yob culture.

The cameras are part of a mushrooming blanket of 250 operating round-the-clock across the East End by Tower Hamlets council, monitored at its massive CCTV control room in Blackwall. A bank of up to 70 screens (some seen above) are live at any one time, surveillanced by staff on shift day and night.

DOUBLE KILLER

“CCTV is used to catch criminals,” boasts Abdal Ullah, council cabinet member for street safety. “There were some very high profile cases where it was absolutely crucial last year and led to serious offenders being sent to prison.”

One high profile case was double-killer Derek Brown who was convicted at the Old Bailey last summer for the murders of two women who he lured from Whitechapel back to his flat in Rotherhithe, a prostitute and an illegal DVD seller.

He was convicted after evidence on CCTV outside Whitechapel Underground station linked him to the women.

“Our operators alert police when they see what they believe to be criminal activity,” added Cllr Ullah. “They also help locate suspects on camera who may try getting away.”

Some 65 arrests were made through CCTV monitoring across the whole of Tower Hamlets in March alone.


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