Over 50 people arrested and 45 knives recovered in first seven days of Operation Target

11th July 2019

Operation Target launched on 1st July

Over 50 people have been arrested, 239 stop searches carried out and 45 knives recovered in the first seven days of Operation Target.

Operation Target – Merseyside Police’s response to tackling serious and violent crime in the region – was launched on Monday 1st July in response to a £4.2m funding boost from the Home Office.

In the first seven days we:

Carried out 128 open land searches

Recovered 58 weapons in open land searches including 31 knives

Stop searched 239 people during which we recovered an additional 14 knives

Arrested 54 people who were fugitives or wanted for knife crime or serious violence offences

Carried out two knife arch operations in conjunction with British Transport Police at train stations on Merseyside

Carried out a joint test purchasing operation with Trading Standards partners in St Helens

Chief Superintendent Matt Boyle said: “Operation Target has only been underway for a little over a week and we are already seeing some very positive results.

“We know this is in the very early stages and we still have a lot of work to do but I am pleased that we have seen the successes that we have.

“We know that serious and violent crime, including gun and knife crime, is of concern to our communities. I want the people of Merseyside to be reassured that we will continue to do what we can to tackle the issues and ensure that our region remains a safe and happy place to live, work and visit.

“I would also ask the public to continue to support our efforts. If you know who is storing or using weapons, or who is responsible for supplying drugs, then please let us know.

“Issues such as drug supply may seem quite trivial but we know that it is directly linked to serious and violent crime. By stopping this and putting the people responsible behind bars I know that we can make this operation a success.”