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Johnson pledges to increase stop and search powers

The police will be given greater freedoms to use stop and search on those known to have carried knives in the past if the Tories are successful in the upcoming General Election.

Boris Johnson says that, amid plans to speed up charging and prosecuting knife offenders, the Conservatives will continue with the controversial top and search powers, saying that they ‘empower’ the police.

The government argues that increased use of stop and search in the past year has successfully led to a 22 per cent increase in arrests for possession of weapons.

The Tories are also pledging that violence reduction units – multi-agency teams made up of the police, social services and other agencies – will be boosted by £35 million next year to champion preventative work and stop violence from happening in the first place.

Johnson said: "A majority Conservative government would come down hard on the scourge of knife crime. We have committed to putting an extra 20,000 police officers on our streets, but they need to have the powers to act decisively and effectively to prevent crime and see that offenders face justice. That’s why today we are announcing greater freedoms for the police to use stop and search on individuals who are known to have carried knives in the past. We are also speeding up prosecutions to make sure the threat of being caught is always an effective deterrent.”



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