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Almost all of the firearms being used by criminals on the streets of the capital are being brought in from abroad, senior police officers have revealed.

And the pattern is being repeated across the country as forces try to clamp down on gun crime.

GB News has been told that Turkey is one key country from where firearms are being sent for use on Britain's streets.

Turkish criminal gangs are smuggling both live weapons and deactivated firearms to UK criminals - who are then reactivating the latter in backstreet workshops.

Around 46 per cent of the weapons seized by the Metropolitan Police last year were converted blank firers.

And though firearms offences in London have hit a 15-year low, authorities have admitted almost half of all cases still go unsolved.

Senior Metropolitan Police officers say that is often because victims and witnesses in some communities are reluctant to engage and share relevant information.

And they have admitted the Met still has some way to go to gain more trust - particularly in ethnically diverse boroughs, where violent crime in some communities remains stubbornly high.


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Over recent weeks, the UK's largest police force has carried out a series of high-impact raids on properties linked to gun crime.

The operation has been aimed at targeting the organised crime groups who the Met says pose the greatest harm.

More than 50 suspects have been arrested and dozens of firearms have been seized; last year alone, 386 illegal firearms were brought in across the capital - more than one every day.

But the Met has revealed that since March last year there had been a reduction from 196 firearms offences to 145.

The force said that in South East London, specialist officers had driven down gun crimes in Lambeth and Southwark by 44 per cent - from 45 offences in 2022/23 to 25 in 2023/24.

On April 4 last year, Tyrese Miller was shot dead as he made his way home from a night out in Croydon, South London.

One man has since been convicted of his killing, as well as the possession of a firearm.

The 22-year-old victim's mother Jackie Taylor said the whole family had been deeply traumatised by death of Tyrese.

"I worry that, if this can happen to Tyrese, it can happen to anyone," she said.

"Once you met Tyrese, you never forgot him. He was the centre of our family. He had friends everywhere. Sometimes it was easier to say who he didn't know.

"For someone that lived such a short life, he meant an incredible amount to so many of us.

"No mother should have to bury their son like I have. What happened to Tyrese has changed all of us. None of us will ever come to terms with what has happened."

Met Commander Paul Brogden, who is responsible for specialist crime, said: "Guns destroy lives and communities. The recent shootings in parts of London are a sad reminder that there is still work for us to do when it comes to cracking down on illegal firearms. My thoughts are with those affected.

"We will continue to build trust in the communities disproportionately impacted by these offences and remain relentless in our pursuit of criminals that use and supply firearms."

While Detective Superintendent Victoria Sullivan, a specialist crime officer based in south-east London, said: “Often the victim who’s been shot does not want to divulge to police and that might be because they’re seeking retribution themselves.

“So potentially today’s victim could be tomorrow’s suspect. And that’s why it’s really important that we act really, really quickly to try and dissolve that situation.”

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