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£54m funding gap ‘hampers’ police in battle against terror

THE fight against terrorism will be made harder by a potential £54million gap in funding, Britain’s most senior police officer has said.

A document compiled by the National Police Chiefs’ Council showed that counter-terrorism police bosses applied for an increase of £104million in 2018/19, but will receive £50million.

Speaking to Nick Ferrari on LBC, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick (pictured) said that counter-terrorism teams have ‘an enormous amount of work to do’.

She would not comment specifically on the leaked figures, reported in the Sunday Times, but said: ‘We all know the threat has gone up, that the teams are working incredibly hard and that there is an enormous amount of work to do.’

Asked about the impact on the fight against terrorism of getting less than requested, she said: ‘If we got very, very, very much less than we asked for it makes it harder. But the government have their job to do and I respect that. There may be room for us in the coming months to put in a further bid. We have got some extra resources and we are building up the capability of the [counter] terrorist teams.’

The Sunday Times quoted a senior Home Office source as saying: ‘Operational requests, like those for surveillance operations, were all met. Other requests like new IT systems will be looked at.’ Police and security services have stopped 10 deadly plots since March 2017 and dealt with five terror attacks.

A MAJOR operation involving 350 police officers led to the arrest of a gang suspected of using lorries to smuggle hundreds of migrants into the UK. Raids in Teesside, Hastings, London and Northumbria followed a year-long investigation assisted by police in France, Belgium and the Netherlands. The National Crime Agency said it was one of its biggest operations. Migrants — mainly Iraqi Kurds — are believed to have paid up to £10,000 each to cross the Channel.