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Mark Duggan among 48 most violent criminals in Europe, inquest told
Mark Duggan was an increasingly active member of “the most violent gang in Europe”, a jury heard today.
Detective Chief Inspector Michael Foote was the first witness to give evidence at the inquest into the police shooting of the 29-year-old in Ferry Lane, Tottenham on August 4, 2011.
DCI Foote was the senior investigating officer in operation DIBRI, which had Duggan and other gang members under surveillance.
He told jurors the Mr Duggan was a senior member of the Tottenham Man Dem (TMD) gang that was involved in gun crime, trafficking of Class A drugs and a number of murders and attempted murders.
The Metropolitan Police’s Trident Gang Crime Command was investigating 48 members of the gang – which police believed to be the most dangerous.
Mr Duggan was one of six men under surveillance and was considered the most likely to come into possession of a gun and therefore the most likely to be arrested.
Police intelligence showed that members of TMD were involved in an increasingly violent feud with the London Fields Boys based in Hackney.
As a result, members of the Tottenham-based gang would often carry guns to nightclubs and parties, the jury heard.
DCI Foote told the court that police intelligence in January 2011 suggested Mr Duggan had shot and killed someone at a nightclub at Christmas time.
In February, further intelligence said Mr Duggan had been firing shots in a car park and in June that year, police suspected that he had started storing drugs at his home address and “had retained the possession of a firearm”.
Because of the historic use of guns by Mr Duggan, police decided to put him under surveillance, DCI Foote said.
The counsel to the inquest, Ashley Underwood, pointed out that Mr Duggan’s criminal record was relatively light considering he was a serious gang member.
Mr Duggan’s criminal record showed he had only been convicted of minor offences such handling stolen goods and possession of cannabis.
The detective inspector said the Mr Duggan had also been arrested for a number of other offences which do not appear on his record because he was not successfully convicted.
Earlier this year, Kevin Hutchinson-Foster was convicted of supplying Mr Duggan with the gun he was allegedly carrying when he was shot dead by armed police officers.
On August 2, 2011, two days before the fatal shooting, police officers knew the 29-year-old planned to pick up the gun from Hutchinson-Foster.
Mr Underwood asked DCI Foote why a surveillance team was not put on Hutchinson-Foster so as to incept the gun before it was handed over.
The police officer said surveillance resources were limited and it is likely that the gun would not have been at Hutchinson-Foster's home address.
He added that it was also likely that a third party, known as a ‘runner’, would have been employed to deliver the gun to Mr Duggan.
The inquest, at the Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand, continues.