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Issue:- 15 May 2014

Final of Matrix Serious and Organised Crime Challenge Shield 2014

YOUNG people from 4 schools across Merseyside took to the pitch at Goodison Park, on Tuesday, 13 May 2014, to take part in the final of the 7 a side Matrix Serious and Organised Crime Challenge Shield football tournament 2014. The tournament, which was launched in 2008, is part of an anti-gun crime initiative put together by the force's specialist Matrix team. It is supported by Liverpool and Everton FC, Merseyside County Schools FA, Liverpool Schools FA and Liverpool County FA and has already seen 34 mixed primary and secondary school teams battling it out on the pitch in a bid to become the winners of this prestigious trophy. This year Kirkby High School and Calderstones School made it through to the girls final and Calderstones School and Halewood Centre for Learning went head to head in the boys final. The primary school final will be played at a later date.

Before the event, Assistant Chief Constable Andy Ward, Matrix Serious and Organised Crime, said:- "The tournament is now in its seventh year and is proving as popular as ever. It forms part of a wider campaign about the consequences of getting involved in gun and gang crime which is making a real difference to the lives of young people on Merseyside. The Matrix Serious & Organised Crime team is committed to working closely with young people who live and go to school in areas that have been affected by the problems caused by guns and criminality. I believe sport, and football in particular, provides us with a common interest that we can take part in together with young people, their families and the local community. I'd like to stress the vast majority of teenagers on Merseyside are keeping clear of guns and gang culture, but there will be some people who find themselves under pressure from so-called friends and acquaintances to get involved. The more people we can spread the word to, the more young people we can help to make a success of their lives and this scheme is helping us to do that."

9 people arrested in connection to online ticket fraud

MERSEYSIDE Police have informed us that 9 people, who live on Merseyside, have been arrested on suspicion they they could be involved in high value online ticket fraud, that could have many as 850 victims. The force, working with The City of London Police's National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB), executed the warrants as part of a national focus week on ticket fraud, led by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO). The raids on Thursday, 15 May 2014, took place at around 7am, across Merseyside in:- Clubmoor, Dovecot, Fazakerley, Anfield, Wavertree, Kensington and Garston. In total officers executed 12 warrants as part of the investigation into a fraud, that's estimated to be worth around £116,000. The arrests following these raids relate to the online sale of tickets that never existed or did not materialise. These include tickets for music concerts/events including; Arctic Monkeys, Arcade Fire, Beyoncé and the Reading Music Festival. Also sporting events including; England rugby games and high profile Liverpool FC, Manchester United FC and Celtic FC matches. 6 men, aged 22, 24, 24, 27, 27 and 30, and 3 women, aged 23, 28 and 37, where arrested on suspicion of offenses including money laundering, fraud and possession of a controlled drug and taken to Police Stations across Merseyside for questioning.

Detective Superintendent Richard Carr, Matrix Serious and Organised Crime (MSOC) Interventions, said:- "This operation sends out a powerful message to those intent on stealing from the public in this way that they cannot hide behind the anonymity of the internet and they will eventually be caught. However, the operation is just the start of our proactive work with our partners to target those individuals conning the ticket buying public out of their money and we will continue to work with our partners to make life difficult for these fraudsters. Unfortunately we have seen a rise in reports of incidents of fraudulent concert or event tickets being sold on unregulated websites. In some cases the victim transferred the money online and then never heard from the seller again. To avoid being disappointed you should only buy from a venue's box office, promoter, official agent or reputable ticket exchange website. There are an increasing number of ticket scamming websites on the internet designed to part you from your money. So while you may be congratulating yourself on tracking down a really good deal, you could end up with no concert and no refund. Do not be talked into using payment methods that you are unfamiliar or uncomfortable with. Do not pay by sending cash, money transfers or money orders. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."

If you or someone else has been a victim of a fraud, report the incident promptly to ActionFraud on:- 0300 123 2040 (Textphone:- 0300 123 2050). A fraud is a criminal offence. Anyone caught committing this type of fraud could face prison.

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