Landmark ruling bans 18 Birmingham gang members from meeting each other

Burger Bar Boys and Johnson Crew gangs hit with massive injunction following spate of gun crimes

L-R: Naasir Francis, Akeen Ivy-Foster, Ravelle Hutchinson, Tesfa Bernard-Wheeler, Rayani Sutherland, Omarni Bernard-SewellWest Midlands Police

Eighteen members of two Birmingham gangs involved in gun and drug-related crimes have been banned from entering large parts of the city and meeting with each following a landmark ruling.

In what is believed to be the biggest gang injunction ever secured, 18 members of the Burger Bar Boys and Johnson Crew gangs are forbidden from associating with each other and entering areas of Birmingham, including the city centre, Handsworth, Newtown, Winson Green and Lozells, for the next two years.

The injunction also places restrictions on the types of vehicles and mobile phones the men aged between 19 and 29 will be able to use.

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The injunctions were granted by the Home Office after West Midlands Police and Birmingham City Council gave statements from more than 80 witnesses describing how the men are "dangerous and a menace to ordinary people".

The move to stop the gang members from seeing each other and enforcing an exclusion zone arrived after more than 20 firearm offences involving Birmingham gangs occurred between the summer of 2015 and the start of 2016.

Lead detective from the Force CID Prevent Team, Detective Sergeant Ian Comfort, said: "We secured interim injunctions to reduce the violence and ensure the community had on-going respite from the incidents. We also dealt swiftly with a number of subsequent breaches.

"This is relatively new legislation and we believe that securing final full injunctions on such a large number of gang members is a UK first. The injunctions are applied for in the civil court in addition to sentences handed out by the criminal court for offences. They are an additional measure to help control the offenders and keep the community safe."

Comfort added: "We have been working closely with Birmingham City Council and other agencies to secure these injunctions and we will continue to work with these men if they wish to turn their back on a gang lifestyle."

L-R: Lawrence Morgan, Jerome Jones, Jerome Christie, Ushane Jeffers, Kayne Robinson, Ashai GreyWest Midlands Police

Superintendent Mat Shaer, the Neighbourhood Policing Superintendent for Birmingham, said: "These injunctions are not sought lightly and the police together with the local council and other voluntary groups and charities will have already made exhaustive efforts with these men and their families to try and steer them away gang culture.

"My officers will be responsible for enforcing the terms of the injunctions and if the men fail to adhere to the conditions they can and will be arrested."

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West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson, said: "I am delighted the authorities in our region have been able to come together to take this really tough action and disrupt these gangs from their criminal behaviour.

"These young men are dangerous and a menace to ordinary people. They must be stopped from behaving like thugs and terrorising hard working people. In the autumn, I will also publish a plan which will set out how we intend to tackle the problem of gangs in the West Midlands."

L-R: Jacob Brown, Cash Wallace, Ishmail Lee, Isaac Duffus, Baboucar Huma, Reial PhillipsWest Midlands Police

The injunction against the 18 gang members was also met with praise by the council. Councillor Tristan Chatfield, Cabinet Member for Transparency, Openness and Equality at Birmingham City Council, said: "I pay tribute to the efforts of all involved in securing these injunctions. They are leading the way in using the powers at their disposal to fight these gangs.

"We will not allow these criminals to create fear amongst the citizens of Birmingham. Our city is a great place to live and this action shows that through partnership working, we will do everything we can to ensure this remains the case."

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Main exclusion zone in BirminghamWest Midlands Police

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