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Forest Gate terror raid cost £2m

BBC | October 3 2006

An anti-terror raid in east London in which an innocent man was shot cost Scotland Yard more than £2 million.

Most of the money was spent on police salaries, including £864,300 overtime payments, as dozens of officers raided two houses in Forest Gate on 2 June.

The force's figures reveal more than £90,000 went on hotel accommodation for the families evacuated from the houses.

Mohammed Abdul Kahar, 23, was shot and he and his brother were arrested. Both were later released without charge.

The final bill for the operation was £2,211,600, according to Metropolitan Police figures.

'Staggering cost'

Among the expenditure was a £120,000 bill for general costs including repairs to the houses, which were badly damaged during the raid and search.

And a further £156,000 was spent on "specialist equipment".

One member of Scotland Yard's watchdog, the Metropolitan Police Authority, described the cost of the operation as "staggering".

Damian Hockney said: "There were question marks over many aspects of Forest Gate.

"I believe that the Met have learned lessons from it, but it needs stressing that the size and cost of future operations must be proportionate."

Police had launched the operation because they believed there was a "chemical bomb" in one of the Forest Gate houses.

It was believed to be the first operation in the country which involved firearms officers wearing chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) protection suits.

The police had contingency plans to evacuate more than 600 houses within 200 metres.

The raid provoked much criticism and Scotland Yard chief Sir Ian Blair, while saying the information leading to the raid came from a "credible source", admitted the police were wrong.


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