Section 60 search powers are being enforced in Merton and Wandsworth tonight in an effort to "prevent serious crime from taking place."

Met Police in Wandsworth have announced that Section 60 search powers had been authorised by Inspector Haslett, active from 3pm today (January 7) until 11pm tonight.

The powers covered the whole of the Wandsworth borough, plus Wimbledon Village and Wimbledon Park in Merton.

A Section 60 Criminal Justice and Public Order Act gives police the right to search people in a defined area until a specific time period when they believe that serious violence will take place, or that a person is carrying a dangerous object or weapon.

A S60 order is often issued in response to incidents of violence in an area.

In this case, Wandsworth Police said it was using the power proactively to prevent serious crime from place in the area.