‘Criminals do not have it all their own way’

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The arsenal of weapons seized by police fighting Edinburgh’s organised crime gangs makes for frightening reading.

The haul from the last 12 months includes the sorts of weapons that you would expect to find only on a battlefield, including a sub-machine gun, a semi-automatic handgun and dum dum bullets.

It goes to show the extreme dangers that the police face in the Capital, especially when they take on the city’s crime syndicates.

Today’s report highlights the success that Lothian and Borders’
Serious and Organised Crime Unit has had in doing this.

Eleven gangs have been broken up in the last three years thanks to
Detective Superintendent David Gordon and his team.

The biggest surprise for most readers is likely to be the fact that as many as 21 criminal gangs have been operating in the Capital over the last year.

The vast majority of us are able to lead relatively peaceful lives, largely oblivious to what goes on in some homes and on some streets.

It is reassuring to know then that thanks to the police’s efforts it is
increasingly rare for these weapons to be used in anger in Edinburgh.

And, when the guns are fired, it is almost always by criminals targeting one another, often in an attempt to recover a debt.

The most reassuring thing, however, is knowing that these dangerous criminals do not have it all their own way when they try to do their business in the Capital.

Big feeling

christmas is coming – in 56 shopping days’ time to be exact – and today we reveal Edinburgh’s “bigger and better” plans to celebrate the festive season.

All the old favourites are back, including the big wheel, German market and ice rink, along with new attractions such as a 3D cinema in Princes Street Gardens.

It will hopefully all add up to creating a magical atmosphere in the city centre for young and old – as well as providing the annual boost for city centre retailers.

The Capital’s six-week festive
celebrations have become a crucial part of the calendar, helping extend the festive benefit beyond the madness of Hogmanay, and it is great to see the offering is being developed further this year.

You may not be in the Christmas quite spirit yet but that will all change come the big switch-on ceremony on November 29.

The only thing we need now is a sprinkling of snow to complete the look – just not too much.