MORE than 50 arrests were made and nearly 500 fines issued after a crackdown on crime and anti-social behaviour across the region’s transport network.
As reported in the November issue of the Correspondent, a multi agency taskforce, headed by Greater Manchester Police, undertook a two-week clampdown on troublemakers, including issues on the Oldham to Rochdale Metrolink line.
As a result, the TravelSafe partnership, using undercover staff and a drone, helped secure 56 arrests and 494 fines. Eleven missing people were also located.
People were arrested for a variety of offences including possession of drugs, shoplifting and recall to prison.
There were also seven arrests for non-payment of outstanding fines worth a combined total of £9,550.
Nearly 500 fines were issued for non-payment of tickets and 27 people were surrendered to the courts for outstanding fines worth £31,000.
Chief Inspector Tariq Butt of Greater Manchester Police said: “We want the results from this operation to send a message to offenders and would-be criminals that we are serious about keeping our travel network safe.
“We are keen to see that justice is served against those offenders causing misery towards commuters, communities and the local area.
“Anyone caught or responsible for a crime will be dealt with for their criminality.
“Our region’s bus and tram network caters for more than 240 million journeys each year which is why it is important that everyone is able to travel to and from their destination safely and without fear.
“The work of our team will not be limited to these two weeks. They will continue to support TravelSafe officers throughout the year to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.”
The partnership is made up of TravelSafe Officers (TSOs) who are Security Industry Authority accredited, Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and police officers, all dedicated to patrolling the transport network including busses and trams.
John Fryer, TfGM’s Safer Travel Manager, said: “Public transport is a safe way to travel and, as the success of this operation shows, the TSP is working together helping to reinforce and maintain that.
“The message to those that choose to commit crime and anti-social behaviour is clear: it will not be tolerated and we will continue to clamp down on it through targeted interventions and proactive operations such as this.”
Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Beverley Hughes, said: “The work done during TravelSafe Operation and the results we have seen send out two clear messages: one that anybody using Greater Manchester’s transport network should feel safe and secure and two, that anti-social behaviour will never be tolerated.
“The work done so far lays solid foundations for what will be an extremely busy festive period on public transport.
“The hard work that has been put into this partnership so far will continue throughout the period to make sure everyone can enjoy themselves.”
To report crime on the transport network call police on 101 or in an emergency dial 999 where there is a threat to life or a crime is in progress.