Two men have been arrested and two loaded firearms (a machine pistol and a handgun) have been recovered after officers from the Matrix disruption team stop searched a man on an electric bike who had been seen acting suspiciously in Wavertree tonight (Wednesday, 17 April 2019).
The Matrix officers were involved in ongoing patrols targeting those believed to be involved in serious organised crime when they spotted three men, two on electric bikes and one on foot. The officers approached the males but they tried to make off. One of the males, a 33-year- old from Norris Green, who was on an electric bike was stopped immediately, whilst the male on foot, who is 34 years and from the Fazakerley area, was arrested a short while later attempting to gain access to a nearby property.
During a search of the male on the bike officers recovered the loaded firearms, along with a small quantity of cannabis.
The rider of the second bike escaped and was last seen heading down Wavertree High Street, inquiries are still ongoing to trace him.
Inspector Adam Cooke from the Matrix Disruption team, said: "The force has put extensive resources in place to tackle those involved in serious organised crime, particularly those involved in gun crime, over the last couple of months. Officers from Matrix disruption, Roads Policing, Dogs and Mounted, have been working with officers from the local policing areas and detectives to bring pressure on serious organised crime groups who we believe may have access to firearms.
"The arrests tonight were made just after 7.30pm during one of our disruption patrols targeting those we believe are involved in serious organised crime. Officers spotted three men, two on bikes and one on foot, acting suspiciously on Old Mill Lane and the officers approached them with the intention of using stop and search powers. When the men saw the officers coming they attempted to make off but we managed to apprehend two of them, despite the male on the bike vociferously resisting arrest. During a search of one of the men we found two loaded firearms - a machine pistol and handgun.
"Our communities can expect to see more of this activity in the coming days and weeks and our message to those who are creating fear in our communities through the use of firearms, is that we will continue to use all the powers available to us, including stop and search, in our pursuit to put those involved in serious organised crime before the courts and behind bars."
If you have any information about those involved in gun crime on Merseyside, or think you know where these groups are storing guns, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.