Nationwide roundup nets more than 35,000 fugitives
CHICAGO (AP) — Police searching for fugitive sex offenders, violent criminals and gang members made more than 35,000 arrests nationwide during an annual monthlong crackdown — the most in the roundup’s 5-year history and nearly double the number from last year — authorities announced Thursday.
The U.S. Marshals Service said the latest “Operation Falcon” captured 433 murder suspects and 900 gang members. Many of the fugitives were arrested on weapons and narcotics charges. The roundup also netted nearly 5,800 violent criminals along the U.S.-Mexico border, an area that has seen a spike in violence in recent months.
“Conducted during the month of June, it (Operation Falcon) has set the record for the largest number of violent criminals to be captured during a 30-day period,” U.S. Marshals Director John Clark said at a news conference in Chicago.
Officials said a major reason for the increase in arrests since the program’s inception in 2005 — there were 19,000 arrests last year — is that more law enforcement agencies are participating.
William Sorukas Jr., chief of domestic investigation for the Marshals Service, said 600 additional departments were involved this year, bringing the total to 2,224 local, state and federal agencies.
Clark said more than 5,000 police officers and sheriff’s deputies were temporarily made deputy marshals, allowing them to move across county and state boundaries in search of fugitives.
The operation also resulted in the recovery of nearly 600 firearms and more than $342,000 in cash, according to the Marshals Service.
Among those captured was a North Carolina man charged with raping a 12-year-old girl, a California gang member charged in a drive-by shooting that left one rival gang member dead and another injured, and a Florida man charged in a triple murder.
Officials said a handful of arrests were made outside the country, including that of a man in the Dominican Republic who was suspected in the rape of a minor and 25 other sex charges in Florida.
At least one arrest stemmed from crimes that occurred outside the United States. A man taken into custody in New Jersey is suspected of using his position as a police officer in Poland to allow a prostitution ring to operate. Authorities say the man was involved in smuggling underage girls from Romania to Poland and forcing them to become prostitutes.
Clark and others noted that though successful, “Operation Falcon” is impossible to run year-round, in large part because the agencies are busy with their own programs and do not have the resources to participate in a national crackdown for more than a limited time.
William Kushner, the police chief in nearby Berwyn, said most departments in the nation have no more than 50 officers and are stretched so thin that it is difficult, if not impossible, to take officers away from their normal duties.
Police blockade crime hotspots
July 8 Manchester
POLICE are to blockade neighbourhoods with Baghdad-style checkpoints in a bid to catch criminals.
A hand-picked team of officers are setting up roadblocks as part of a series of lightning strikes on crime hotspot areas.
GMP is thought to be the first force in Britain to trial the new tactic from Wednesday.
Civil liberties campaigners say they will monitor how it works.
US police in Washington were criticised last year after they set up security checkpoints following a spate of shootings.
Critics compared the approach to the security clampdown in Baghdad.
Senior officers at GMP say the operation will see crime-hit neighbourhoods being blockaded to target a wide range of offenders.
Traffic officers will set up checkpoints using number-plate recognition technology.
Officers from the force’s Tactical Vehicle Crime Unit will also be deployed with intercept cars and motorbikes.
Neighbourhood officers and a drugs dog will also patrol the checkpoints. Police say the areas to be targeted will be identified by intelligence officers.
A spokeswoman said: “As well as bringing criminals to justice, it is hoped that the new unit will help gather intelligence and raise local confidence in what the police are doing to fight crime.
“Though the teams will be dealing with a wide range of crimes brought to their attention, there will be a particular emphasis on targeting burglars in the coming months.”
The operation was being launched on Middleton Road, at Bowkervale, Blackley, on Wednesday.
Det Chief Supt Russ Jackson, who is leading the scheme, said: “With Operation Tornado we will effectively lock down areas suffering outbreaks of crime and quickly bring offenders to justice.
“The team will make lightning strikes on a badly affected area and then be rapidly deployed to their next target area, keeping offenders guessing where they will hit next.
“Operation Tornado will be putting the heat on criminals this summer but will be a real breath of fresh air to the law-abiding citizens living in the affected areas.”
Police in Washington DC used the scheme to check drivers’ and those without a ‘legitimate purpose’ in the area were turned away.
DIG Capital Police lauds role of citizen committees in counter terrorism efforts [ edit for clarity by SF]
Islamabad: July 7
Deputy Inspector General of Capital Police, Binyamin Khan has lauded the determination of the members of citizen committees who rendered their full cooperation in counter terrorism efforts of the government. Binyamin Khan, addressing an inaugural ceremony of Citizen Security and Vigilance Committees here on Tuesday, said that the capital police was taking all humanly possible measures to prevent terrorism. To provide foolproof security to the citizens Islamabad police have set up 47 citizen committees for vigilance against suspected elements in their respective districts of the federal capital, he added.
He said that the selected members from each community would share information about the suspects and overall situation of their respective areas. He informed that an Assistant Sub-Inspector would keep liaison between the police and the committees.
IGP further said that currently the country was stabbed by many problems, but law and order was the most challenging of all.
Commenting on suicidal attacks, he said that terrorists changed their techniques and tactics day by day accordingly with the security measures of the law and order agencies. He said that the suicide bombers have also changed their physical appearance to disguise themselves from security agencies. Binyameen said that the handlers of suicide bomber gave them full training and also provided them with drugs for intoxication which suicide bombers used before they carried out their missions.
IGP appreciated the sacrifices of those police constables who laid their lives to save their fellow citizens and proved to be an iron wall in front of terrorists. Speaking at the occasion, Senior Superintendent Police SSP (Operations), Tahir Alam Khan said that terrorist wanted to destabilize our country. He said that the numbers of martyrs of 1965 and 1971 wars with India were less than the numbers of those who had lost their lives in the recent wave of terrorism.
Explaining the role of citizen committees, SSP said that they would cooperate with police by sharing information about their respective areas. He said that committees would share the information about suspects elements, those who were living in rented houses, workshops, Masjids, Madaris, house servants, markets, outlaws, guests houses, hotels, bus stands, factories etc. He said that the name of informer would be kept secret.
The SSP Operations said that the members should not use their status as tool to threaten their opponents. He said, citizens committees were purely formed to counter insurgency. At the end members of citizen security committees took oath from SSP Traffic Sultan Azam Taimoori, and ensured their full cooperation with police against terrorism.