December 11 2013 Latest news:
Friday, September 6, 2013
The 100th arrest for prostitution related offences has been made as part on an ongoing operation, but police say they are keen for information about offenders.
"We are particularly keen to target the users of prostitutes and welcome any information that would help us do so"
Operation Clearlight began in September to tackle prostitution in the Ilford Lane, Ilford area.
Arrests have been for various offences including kerb crawling and breaching the dispersal zone.
Sgt Lee Wilkinson, from the Loxford Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “Enforcement operations are only one way of tackling prostitution. These operations send out the message that it will not be tolerated despite the reasons given by those who commit offences.”
Over the past year, 236 prostitutes have been cautioned and seven persistent offenders have been given anti-social behaviour orders, granted for between two and five years.
These usually ban persistent offenders from the Ilford Lane area.
The operation has been run together with Redbridge Council which has tried to address various factors which contribute to prostitution in the area.
This has included cutting back trees and hedges and improving lighting and installing gates.
There is also support for women who want to leave prostitution and the council received more than £100,000 from the Mayor’s Office to fund schemes.
In a joint statement, Cllr Shoaib Patel and Cllr Alex Wilson, who are responsible for tackling prostitution, said: “This is a very complex problem and won’t be solved overnight, however, we’re doing everything we can to keep the pressure on and show those who operate there that we will not tolerate it.”
A survey of residents around the Ilford Lane area has also been done which will form the basis of future planning on how to address the problem.
Mr Wilkinson added: “We will continue to work with Redbridge Council to reduce the impact of prostitution on Loxford residents. We are particularly keen to target the users of prostitutes and welcome any information that would help us do so.”
If you have information about prostitution related activities, including registration numbers of suspected kerb crawlers, email Loxford.SNT@met.police.uk
There are still traffic jams for miles on the westbound carriageway of the A406 from South Woodford after a teenager was stabbed to death.