Merseyside riots: CCTV of suspects released by police

Images released by Merseyside Police
Image caption Police have released images taken from CCTV on Smithdown Road

Police have released CCTV images of people they want to speak to after riots across Merseyside.

The images show several youths, some masked and armed, who were in Smithdown Road, Wavertee, on Tuesday night.

A group of up to 200 youths were involved in stand-offs with police. Disturbances also broke out in Toxteth, Bootle and Birkenhead.

More than 70 people have been arrested over the rioting on Monday and Tuesday and 45 people have been charged.

Five other men have received fines, 10 males have been bailed pending further enquiries, six males and two females remain in custody and six males have been released without charge.

On Thursday afternoon, two men and a boy from Merseyside were arrested on suspicion of violent disorder on Smithdown Road.

Merseyside Police said these were the first post-riot arrests made as a result of their investigation into the disorder.

The three, aged 47, 17 and and 27, were arrested after warrants were executed in Liverpool and Wirral. They were being held for questioning.

Large gangs

Those arrested as a result of the riots have been questioned on suspicion of various offences, including violent disorder, possession of weapons, drugs, burglary and car theft.

Officers are urging anyone with information about any offenders to email them.

Police said the disorder was the result of the actions of a small minority of people and have vowed to track them down.

Assistant Chief Constable Andy Ward said: "The public have an important part to play and I would urge everyone to look at the images in the media and tell us who these offenders are and where we can find them so they can be brought to justice."

The violence on Tuesday night centred on Smithdown Road, leading to police closing the road at 22:30 BST.

Large gangs of youths torched cars and damaged property and there were reports of many throwing missiles at the emergency services.

Four fire engines were taken out of service after they were damaged in Lawrence Road.

The region experienced a quieter night on Wednesday, after police brought in extra officers and arrested anyone suspected of intending to commit crime. Wet weather is also believed to have kept many people indoors.

Extra police

Merseyside Police has stressed that Liverpool is "open as usual", and will be over the weekend.

Assistant Chief Constable Colin Matthews said: "Merseyside Police understands that some people may have concerns about coming in to the city after seeing reports of disorder earlier in the week.

"I would like to reassure people that the force has taken strong and robust action to deal with the minority of people who have been involved in disorder on our streets.

"Over the coming days there will be an increased police presence to deal with any incidents if they should arise."

He said extra police would be in the city centre on Friday and Saturday night.

Liverpool's game against Sunderland on Saturday is still scheduled to be played at Anfield.

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