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28 August 2013, 11:22 | Updated: 28 August 2013, 11:35
Sixteen firearms and ammunition have been found during a raid by police tackling gun crime in Luton.
A woman and two young people have been arrested after searches were carried out in Luton and Dunstable on Thursday 22 August 2013.
The first search was carried out at an address in Plaiters Way, Dunstable, where a 52 year old woman was arrested on suspicion of bringing an imitation firearm into the UK, under the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006.
The second search was carried out at an address in Arundel Road, Luton where 16 firearms were seized and two juveniles were also arrested on suspicion of bringing an imitation firearm into the UK.
Specialist firearms officers and an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit attended to make sure all the weapons were safe before they were seized for further forensic tests and to clarify if they are illegally held.
After hearing of the warrants, Chief Constable Colette Paul, said: “Bedfordshire Police is committed to reducing gun crime in Luton and we will continue to focus on those who commit firearms related offences to ensure we keep these criminals on the back foot.”
Detective Inspector Sandra Evans, leading the Operation Boson Team, said: “We are continuing to listen and respond to community concerns. All information given to the police is used and kept confidentially, so if anyone has information that can help in the fight against those who are involved in gun crime, I would encourage them to speak to officers now.”
There were ten shootings in Luton between January and May 2013, prompting Bedfordshire Police to put officers with machine guns out on patrol. These high-visibility armed patrols have since been scaled back.
Anyone with information about gun crime can contact detectives on the direct confidential reporting line 01582 394281, or use the 24 hour non-emergency number 101; text force control direct on 07786 200011 or contact the independent crime fighting charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111. Up to £2000 worth of reward money is available for information about gun crime in Luton.