None of us like to hear about violent crime in Crawley, especially when weapons are involved. It feels like we are often reading about local reports of stabbings, although the situation is much worse in London which has seen a large number of murders this year. Much of this crime is drug related and tends to occur between criminals rather than innocent members of the public being the victims, although not exclusively so. No one wants it happening or being caught up in it.
In London, policing and crime comes under the Mayor who is also the Police and Crime Commissioner. Sadiq Khan has presided over a terrible increase in violent crime in London and comes across as being more interested in virtue signalling than getting a grip on London’s violent crime. He also tries to blame the government for his failings on policing while finding the money to almost double his PR budget from £1.3 million to £2.5 million.
While some of Crawley’s violent crime is linked to London, we do need to do more nationally to make life harder for criminal gangs and the ease of which weapons can be accessed. This is why I very much welcome that last month, the Home Secretary Sajid Javid introduced new legislation to ban the delivery of knives and corrosive substances that are bought online and delivered to residential addresses.
The Offensive Weapons Bill will make it harder for young people to buy knives and acid online, with sellers requiring rigorous age verification to prove those purchasing knives or corrosives are over 18. Failure to do so will leave them liable for prosecution.
We will also see the banning of the possession of weapons such as zombie knives, knuckle dusters and death stars - both in public and private. Those who currently possess them will be forced to hand them in. There really is no legitimate reason for people to possess such weapons. There will also be new criminal offences of selling corrosive substances to a person under the age of 18 and the possession corrosive substances in a public place.
Councllor Duncan Crow, Leader of Crawley Borough Council Conservative Group
4th July 2018