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Jail for man caught carrying a loaded gun by Project Servator officers - London

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Idris Ali

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A man has been sentenced to five years in prison after specialist Project Servator officers caught him carrying a loaded gun on the London Underground.

Idris Ali, 21, and of Mordaunt Road, Brent, was found guilty of possessing a firearm at Blackfriars Crown Court on Thursday 17th October. He also pleaded guilty to possessing a class B drug.

On 24th April 2019, Project Servator officers from the Metropolitan Police were conducting an unpredictable patrol in Aldgate East London Underground station.

Ali noticed the high visibility presence of officers and pretended to purchase a ticket.

This caught the attention of the Project Servator officers, who are specially trained in spotting those with criminal or terrorist intent, and Ali was stopped by a plain clothes officer.

He smelt of cannabis and admitted having cannabis in his bag, so he was stopped and searched under the Misuse of Drugs Act.

At this point, Ali told officers he felt sick and was going to have to sit down.

Seconds later, alongside a hard hat and high visibility jacket, officers discovered the loaded handgun wrapped in a grey cloth along with some loose ammunition.

Ali was immediately handcuffed and cautioned. Initially he claimed he had found the gun, before stating he’d bought it believing it to be memorabilia. In his police interview, he claimed it was a gift.

BTP firearms officers quickly attended and made the gun safe, and Ali was taken to police custody.

Detective Constable Max Wilson from British Transport Police said: “Ali did his best to make excuses, but carrying a loaded gun on the rail network is completely unjustifiable.

“Not only was the gun loaded, it was accompanied by further ammunition. The seizure of this dangerous weapon, and the success of the investigation, could well have saved lives.

“I hope his significant custodial sentence sends a strong and clear message to anyone thinking of using the transport system to move weapons and conduct criminal activity.”

Project Servator Inspector Pete Day added: “This was a fantastic stop by our colleagues at the Metropolitan Police, and a result of brilliant co-ordinated work between ourselves, the City of London Police, and the Ministry of Defence Police.

“Working together like this helps us keep London safe, and we are specially trained in spotting individuals like Ali who would prefer to avoid us. We will pop up anywhere, at any time.

“The success of patrols like these also relies on the public being our eyes and ears too and letting us know if anything or anyone doesn’t feel right when they’re out and about. Please trust your instincts and text us discretely on 61016.”

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