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London Riots: News on Shooters Update

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When the riots took place in 2011 across the nation I reported that the Police and a helicopter were fired upon ELEVEN TIMES during the riots in August, occuring in Aston, Birmingham.

Below is a Helicopter infrared video still of two men who as I reported at the time “are wanted by the police.”

They have now been given jail sentences between 12 and 30 years; the youngest member of this group last name Rehman was ‘found guilty of riot and firearms possession with intent’ and given the shortest sentence of the group, he will be serving 12 years in prison.

The sentences were given to seven members of the group which were caught on Infra-red Camera by a police helicopter, which was shot upon during this incident in August 2011, they have been charged for firearms possession, reckless arson and rioting.

The following are photos from the Daily Mail showing the culprits and their sentences.

Nicholas Francis, 26, was described by the judge as ‘a dangerous man’ and was jailed for 30 years, the 5 others are Lewis, 27, and Laidley, 20, both jailed for 23 years, Farrell, 20, and Collins, 25, both jailed for 18 years, 17-year-old, named as Rehman after judge lifts order, gets 12 years.

Judge Davis also said of the crimes committed by the latter, that :

“The purpose of all this was not to loot or to steal, nor was it mindless vandalism. The purpose, the common purpose, was to behave in such a way that the police would come to the scene and then to attack the police.”

At the time my blog reported that eleven shots had been fired, this number of shots fired at the police and the helicopter is now said to be around 12 and reports have come through that a total of four fire-arms were being used by the members of this group.

They have been linked to two gangs within Birmingham; to fire these many shots at police officers and a Police Helicopter is beyond outrageous, they are now facing what seems to be the full extent of the law for their actions of intending to endanger life as Judge Davis pointed out in court.


The convicted rioters firing at the police helicopter during the Birmingham riots

The above shows a member of this mob, of which there were around 40, taking aim at Police officers, Judge Davis went on to comment on the seriousness of this action and other similar actions on that day (9th August 2011) he said in court:

“The intention was to endanger life. Although no physical injury was suffered, that was wholly a matter of luck. Had the police helicopter been struck, the consequences could have been catastrophic. There may have been no physical injury to a police officer, but the damage to the wellbeing of the city of Birmingham caused by an armed gang prepared to act in this way was grave. It is very difficult to conceive a case of this type more serious than this one.”

At the time Chief Constable of West Midlands, Chris Sims said in a statement of the helicopter footage that: “This footage shows seemingly co-ordinated criminal behaviour with no regard for people’s lives, whether it be through the setting of a fire, shooting at unarmed officers or shooting at the police helicopter.”

It was not only the police who were targeted by the mob on that night but also The Barton Arms pub, it was smashed and set alight whilst the residents inside the pub took refuge in a room above the pub.

They caused much damaged to the Barton Arms pub and other premises in the area by throwing petrol bombs and smashing shop windows with chairs. Officers in patrol cars attempted to stop the looting and rioters, the police cars had petrol bombs thrown at them; at 11.50pm officers attempted to disperse the group, this was when the 12 shots were fired at them and at the West Midlands helicopter.

Below is a video from the Guardian.co.uk which shows the events of that dangerous night.



Judge Davis went on to say in his statements about the sentencing of these 6 individuals:

“It is pure good fortune that no police officer was hit by one or more of those shots. There was gunshot damage to a wall immediately below where the police officers were standing. There was gunshot damage to a building behind them indicated that bullets passed just over their heads. Those who fired the shots were not standing alone. Many members of the group remained close to them as they did so.”

These fired bullets it would evidently seem were very close to injuring or taking the life of one or more of the police officers on the scene on that night. Further remarks from Judge Davis include “When the firearms were used, that was not done randomly. There was a concerted attack on the police with guns.”

“Had the police helicopter been struck, the consequences could have been catastrophic. There may have been no physical injury to a police officer. The damage to the well-being of the city of Birmingham caused by an armed gang prepared to act in this way was grave.”

Whether the Police will be making further arrests regarding this incident, remains to be seen.

What is definate is that those who go to court if arrested, will most likely receive sentences from 12 years upwards for this plot to endanger police life and deliberately bring the police to the scene only to begin an attack on them.

I’ll conclude with a quote from the judge who remarks generally about the riots in Birmingham:

Judge Davis said: “No ordinary person could walk the streets of the ­centre of Birmingham in safety.”

This sums up the atmosphere around everywhere at the time these riots took place all around the nation, the controversial decision to go ahead with police cuts is now questionable more than ever.The Police organised a march in protest at these cuts, the march went ahead and whether there will be more cuts to be made is what many will not want to see.

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