Met bids for foreign police to fight crime in London

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The Metropolitan Police is bidding for European funding to create a unit of overseas officers to help tackle foreign offenders in the capital.

The force has requested 2.2 million Euros (£1.9 million) of European Union funding to allow officers from other countries to be seconded to the force.

Romania and Poland have agreed already to sign up.

The officers would share intelligence and join Met officers on operations, Scotland Yard said.

It is understood the overseas officers would not have powers of arrest.

A spokesman for the Met said: "The top 10 countries of origin of those arrested are Romania, Nigeria, Somalia, Jamaica, Lithuania, Portugal, Poland, India, Pakistan and Ireland, with 40% of all foreign national offenders from these countries."

Foreign nationals account for 28% of those arrested on suspicion of criminal offences in London, recent Met figures showed.

The unit is understood to form part of Operation Nexus, which combines police and immigration intelligence to tackle foreign criminals in London.

More than 300 foreign criminals have been deported since the joint initiative was launched by the UK Border Agency (UKBA) and the Met in September.

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