Area six: Police target Ilford Lane kerb crawlers successfully

The Loxford Safer Neighbourhood police team

The Loxford Safer Neighbourhood police team - Credit: Archant

There have been 31 arrests of kerb crawlers in Ilford Lane since December, it was revealed at last night’s Area Committee Six meeting.

Residents and councillors alike hailed the prostitute enforcement operation, known as Clear Light, a success at the meeting in South Park Primary School, Seven Kings.

However, Cllr Filly Maravala (Independent, Loxford) expressed fears that the operation was moving the sex trade into other areas.

He said: “They are displacing them into Clementswood where we never had a problem before.”

The meeting also saw a clarification of knife laws after a resident cited his concerns after reading the Recorder’s story about the Sikh who was acquitted of causing grievous bodily harm after a jury decided he used his ceremonial kirpan in self defence.

Sgt Lee Wilkinson, of the Loxford Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “It is permitted as part of a person’s religion. It’s a totally different kettle of fish if you are carrying a knife for the sake of it. That’s very different.”

Cllr Jas Athwal (Labour, Mayfield) highlighted that the case was a very rare exception.

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He said: “In the case in question the gentleman was struggling and quite honestly I look back in all my time of 50 years of being on this planet and this is the first time I have heard of a case on the kirpan.”