Tory Shaun Bailey's police pledge over blitz on London violent crime

Sadiq Khan challenged over crime in London: Tory mayoral outsider Shaun Bailey pledges an extra 12,000 police officers and youth workers in blitz on violence as his rival outlines £30million annual investment

  • The Labour politician was interviewed on Good Morning Britain today
  • Asked if he has confidence in Home Secretary’s ability to do the job 
  • His response was to stop and chuckle before laying into the senior minister

The battle to be mayor of London hotted up today as Sadiq Khan was challenged over violent crime in the capital. 

Tory Shaun Bailey, the incumbent Mr Kahn’s main challenger, unveiled plans for an extra 8,000 police officers and 4,000 youth workers as he blasted his rival’s record.

At the same time Mr Khan pledged an extra £30million per year to fund 1,000 new officers, ahead of May’s election in which he is the favourite to win a second term. 

He repackaged Tony Blair’s slogan as he pledged to be ‘tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime’, amid a spate of stabbings in London in recent days.

They include Sven Badzak, 22, who was stabbed to death in a ‘completely unprovoked’ attack by six young men as he went to buy a bagel in Kilburn on February 6. 

Mr Bailey told the Evening Standard today: ‘Crime is on the rise in London. Just last weekend, 17 Londoners were stabbed. But instead of doing something about it, Sadiq Khan chose this week to announce his commission to decide which statues to tear down.

‘We need a Mayor who understands that safe streets aren’t a luxury — they’re a necessity. As a former youth worker, I know this isn’t the city our children deserve to inherit.’

He said that the cost of the extra police officers would come from ‘additional Home Office funding to the Met and from long term savings at City Hall.

 But a London labour spokeswoman said: ‘The Tory candidate has been caught repeatedly lying to Londoners about everything from council tax to the congestion charge – and these latest ridiculous proposals are just more of the same.

‘These are fantasy numbers, plucked out of thin air and with no credible plan for how to pay for them at a time when Tory Ministers are inflicting huge austerity cuts on our city.’ 

Tory Shaun Bailey, the incumbent Mr Kahn’s main challenger, unveiled plans for an extra 8,000 police officers and 4,000 youth workers as he blasted his rival’s record

 At the same time Mr Khan pledged an extra £30million per year to fund 1,000 new officers, ahead of May’s election in which he is the favourite to win a second term

Mr Bailey made the announcement as part of a 10-point plan unveiled today, which also pledged:

  • 32 new youth centres, including a major centre in each borough, and 4,000 new youth workers
  • One hundred thousand new homes that would be sold for £100,000 each to help get young people on the housing ladder.
  • A zero-emission bus fleet by 2025 and interest-free loans to help cabbies get electric vehicles
  • Introducing corporate sponsorship to the Tube to offset free travel for pensioners and children.
  • A London Infrastructure bank to bankroll large-scale projects.
  • Reversing the congestion charge increase and scrapping Ultra Low Emission Zone extension.
  • Reversing planned council tax increases
  • Working closely with ministers
  • Introducing 30-minutes of free parking in outer boroughs.

As well as £30million annually to fund officers, Mr Khan said he would use £8million raised through council tax to fund other crime prevention measures, including expanding GPS tagging of violent offenders after prison release and extending the funding for youth work services for young victims of violence.  

‘Violent crime had been increasing across the country and in London since 2014, while serious youth violence had been going up since 2013,’ he said.

‘We’ve worked hard to tackle violence in our city, and it started to fall well before the pandemic hit and has continued to do so. But I am not content or complacent, we still have a long way to go.

‘If we are to see the long-term reductions in violence that we all want to see in our city, we must continue to tackle the underlying causes of crime, such as poverty, deprivation and lack of opportunities for young Londoners.

‘I’m doing everything I can from City Hall to reduce violence, but it’s clear we still have huge financial challenges ahead because the Government has implemented a new era of austerity on public services in London. Ministers must now match my commitment to tackling this issue and fully refund City Hall and the Met for all the lost income and money spent tackling the pandemic.’

London mayor Sadiq Khan LAUGHS on Good Morning Britain when asked if he has confidence in Home Secretary Priti Patel and brands her ‘a big failure’ over the border quarantine system

London mayor Sadiq Khan laughed at Priti Patel today as he tore into her record as Home Secretary.

The Labour politician was asked on Good Morning Britain whether he had full confidence in Ms Patel after she failed to back the head of the Metropolitan Police in an interview last week. 

His response was to stop and chuckle before laying into the senior minister. 

‘I don’t like to be discourteous or impolite to colleagues, even from other parties,’ he said.

‘I think Priti Patel’s track record as a Home Sec won’t be a great one in relation to what she’s not done to address some of the concerns we had around the hostile environment, I think she has not addressed the concerns we have got in relation to our borders, I think the quarantine policies have been a big failure and I don’t think she has given the police the resources they need.’

Mr Khan and Ms Patel have often clashed over policing in the capital. And last week she refused to back under-pressure Met Police chief Dame Cressica Dick as the UK’s top cop faced pressure over a botched probe into a VIP paedophile ring.

Last week the Home Secretary refused to back under-pressure Met Police chief Dame Cressica Dick as the UK’s top cop faced pressure over a botched probe into a VIP paedophile ring

In an LBC radio phone-in the Home Secretary was asked to back the commissioner over the Operation Midland investigation into senior politicians including Leon Brittan.

The former home secretary was one of the men falsely accused by now convicted fantasist Carl Beech – then known as ‘Nick’ – and died in January 2015 without knowing there was insufficient evidence to prosecute him.

The Met chief is facing calls to quit after Lady Brittan used a Daily Mail interview  to attack a ‘culture of cover-up’ at the force.

But repeatedly questioned on LBC Radio whether she has confidence in the Scotland Yard supremo, Ms Patel responded: ‘I work with the commissioner.

‘The commissioner does a lot of great work and she oversees the largest police force in the country.

Former home secretary Leon Brittan was one of the men falsely accused by now convicted fantasist Carl Beech – then known as ‘Nick’ – and died in January 2015 without knowing there was insufficient evidence to prosecute him

‘There are still questions, rightly so – some questions have been put to me today, actually, very publicly in newspapers, and it’s right that I also look at these questions.’

It was only after the uncomfortable grilling that a spokesman for the Home Secretary came out and gave the Commissioner her full backing. 

The spokesman said: ‘As the Home Secretary said, she works with Cressida Dick every day. The Home Secretary has full confidence in her to do her job.’ 

Downing Street later said Boris Johnson joined the Home Secretary in having ‘absolute confidence’ in Dame Cressida. 

A Number 10 spokesman said of the Met’s bungled investigation into false claims of a VIP sex abuse ring in Westminster: ‘This was a deeply concerning case and the PM’s thoughts are with Lady Brittan, her late husband (Leon Brittan) and others affected.

‘The Prime Minister has complete confidence in the Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick, as does the Home Secretary.

‘They are working together to reduce crime and protect the public from the threats posed by serious criminals, terrorism and the coronavirus pandemic.

‘Both the Prime Minister and the Home Secretary have absolute confidence in her as we work together with the police to make our streets safer.’ 

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