Members of a notorious traveller gang from St Helens have been hit with court orders banning them from parts of the town.
Police successfully applied for injunctions against six men suspected of being leading players in the Price clan.
The civil injunctions ban them from entering parts of the Sherdley Road area. carrying more than one mobile phone or any equipment that could be used to produce drugs.
The six men hit with the orders are:
Thomas Price, aged 53, from Clinkham Wood
Gregory Amos Price, 22, from Sutton Heath
Amos Matthew Price, 21 from Sutton Heath
Amos Matthew Price, 39, from Sutton Heath
Joseph Knockton, 20, from Thatto Heath
Anthony McGinley, 21, from South Yorkshire
Police believe the injunctions were necessary to curb the growing tide of gang violence engulfing parts of St Helens.
By restricting who they can contact and areas where they can’t go, officers hope to disrupt the criminal activities of the six and a wider group they are part of, as well as give them the opportunity to avoid getting drawn into further criminality.
Chief Inspector Steve Brizell, head of operations at St Helens command team, said the gang injunctions were a vital tool for reducing violence by the group, which had been concerning local people.
He said: “Local officers have worked tirelessly to gather evidence and intelligence over a lengthy period.
“This information has been put before a judge who has granted six full gang injunctions relating to an organised crime group based in the town but who have links across the country as well.
"Several more injunctions remain as ‘interim’ orders where the person still has conditions to keep to and we hope to succeed in having these made into full orders soon which would then last for two years as well.
“Gang injunctions are civil injunctions based on a balance of probabilities and allow the police to successfully tackle gang related violence and drug dealing activity, particularly where we know a crime has taken place but the victim or witnesses won’t cooperate and provide the evidence we need for a full criminal prosecution.
“However, by breaching the civil injunction a person can be arrested and taken off the streets and into custody where they face the prospect of an immediate prison sentence, so the gang injunctions are a powerful tool.
“We do not use them lightly and they are aimed at disrupting the criminal activities of people we believe are posing the most serious threat to the communities of St Helens as well as people within their own circle.
“Violence, threats of violence, disorder, drug dealing and the deliberate damage to people’s homes and vehicles will not be tolerated by Merseyside Police.
“Local officers will continue to use gang injunctions and other police powers and tactics to make life as a difficult as possible for criminals and protect decent, law-abiding members of the public from the threat they pose.
“If you have information that could help us enforce these injunctions then please report it to your local neighbour police team or, in an emergency, call 999.”
In addition, Thomas Price and Joseph Knockton are banned from entering the area bounded by and including Sherdley Road and Sherdley caravan park; Anthony McGinley is banned from entering any part of Merseyside.