'We're far too soft on crime': Caller wants stricter laws after double stabbing in London

28 November 2022, 17:03

Caller: 'We're far too soft on crime'

Madeleine Wilson

By Madeleine Wilson

This caller wants UK laws for drug dealing and carrying knives to be stricter after two 16-year-old boys were fatally stabbed in south-east London on Saturday afternoon.

This caller spoke with Shelagh Fogarty about UK crime after two 16-year-old boys who were fatally stabbed just a mile apart in south-east London on Saturday afternoon.

Kearne Solanke was stabbed to death in Greenwich on Saturday alongside Charlie Bartolo, with police saying the two fatal stabbings - which took place around one mile apart - are linked.

The devastated friends and family of one of the teenagers have paid tribute to their loved one, describing him as a "beautiful boy".

It was reported earlier this year that crimes recorded in England and Wales hit a 20-year high, while charges fell to a record low.

The caller started by telling Shelagh that after working with vulnerable people he believes that a lot of crime is "drug-related" and he think this has become a "normalised culture" in the UK.

He said: "We are far too soft on crime. We're far too soft on drug dealers and drug dealers wreck people's lives."

The caller told Shelagh: "In my opinion, if you deal in drugs you get a very lengthy sentence full stop - and if you carry a knife and you get caught you go to prison."

Read more: 'Devastated' family pays tribute after two boys, 16, stabbed to death less than one mile apart in South London

Read more: Double murder probe as two teenagers, 16, stabbed to death a mile apart from each other

He said: "Take New York, for example, they had a massive crime problem in New York and the only way it was solved was by coming down hard on criminals and having more police.

"If you've got a system where drug dealers are given short sentences without a proper deterrent you're not going to do it with that you have to say enough is enough you're going to prison."

Shelagh asked: "But is the answer to send a 15-year-old who's selling weed on the street corners to Feltham Young Offender Institution?

The caller said: "No, I think that age bracket you'd have to do something else, but you'd have to do something that's a bit of a wake-up call, and also you have to be careful because some of them have been groomed.

"But with adults that sell drugs, they should have a lengthy sentence.

"Politically it's a win-win, I don't know why the government doesn't say that's what's going to happen.

"Any adults that deal in drugs create so much misery for people and a lot of it is linked to knife crime over the last 20 years."

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