“The most significant operation the MET has ever launched against Serious and Organised Crime.”
Operation Eternal was launched by the MET in April 2020, and they can now confirm that following on from a significantly high number of arrests across the country, over 100 people have now been charged with offences relating to drugs and firearms and are awaiting trial.
The National Crime Agency (NCA) launched Operation Venetic at the same time to crack down on the ‘untouchable’ top-tier criminals involved in these offences with unprecedented raids on homes and businesses.
It is estimated that £13 million have been seized during the course of the investigation in London alone. There have also been a significant number of arrests across Europe.
£5 million has been recovered from one suspect, which is the most ever seized from an individual.
The National Crime Agency, Regional Crime Squads and every police force in the UK have been involved in this large-scale operation.
The NCI Director, Nikki Holland, stated, “This is the biggest and most significant law enforcement operation of its kind in the UK, and it is previously unmatched in terms of its scale.”
The MET Police Commissioner, Dame Cressida Dick, stated, “This is just the beginning. We will be disrupting organised criminal networks as a result of these operations for weeks, months and possibly years to come.”
Sophisticated organised criminals are using military graded encrypted communication devices and a system called Encrochat to trade in both drugs and firearms. This system has been hacked by the police and other policing partners.
It has been said that these encrypted devices will cost around £3,000 to purchase and have a hidden, undetected and unsecured operating system in place. This, in turn, enables the user to hide applications and allows chats between the same devices.
These devices will require a password and have an extra panic pin. This enables a device’s contents to be wiped clean by simply entering in a pin number.
You can also select something called ‘burn time’ on the devices. This enables messages to be sent with a time that they will be deleted from the recipient’s device as well as the senders.
If you are approached for an interview by the police or other agency or suspect that you may be in the future, I would urge you to get into contact with our voluntary police interview specialists, and team of lawyers on our designated 24-hour number of 0800 2335822. We work closely with a Leading London Law Firm of Solicitors who can assist you in ‘aggressively’ defending your case, whether this is in a police interview or at court.