22:13 GMT27 October 2020
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    Gang warfare on the streets of London has not gone away during the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, if anything there have been more violent incidents than before the lockdown began.

    British police are investigating the murder of two men who were shot dead in different parts of the country amid widespread social media speculation the killings were revenge for a gang murder in 2017.

    On Monday, 12 October, a 20-year-old man was shot dead in Telford, near Birmingham, and 24 hours later a man aged 23 was gunned down 150 miles away in Hayes, west London.

    Neither victim has been formally identified by police but it is believed the man killed in Telford is drill rapper Teerose.

    Social media has been buzzing all week with rumours about Teerose, who had almost 4,000 followers on Instagram and had just put out a new song on YouTube, called No Opiates.

    The killings are also believed to be linked to the unsolved murder of Abdullahi Tarabi, a 19-year-old known by the streetname Teewhiz, who was stabbed to death in Northolt, west London, in April 2017.

    Two teenagers, aged 16 and 17, went on trial for the murder of Teewhiz but were acquitted in 2018 when a key witness refused to testify.

    ​The trial heard he was killed in a turf war between a Northolt gang - Ngang - and Rayners Lane gangs. 

    After the pair were acquitted Judge Nicholas Cooke QC said: "very few people are prepared to help the police" and added: "Had somebody helped the police , the outcome might have been different."

    ​Teerose is known to be affiliated with the Rayners Lane gang, which comes from an estate in Harrow, north-west London.

    ​He is believed to have relocated to Telford for his own safety.

    A West Mercia Police spokesman said on Thursday, 15 October, the victim of Monday’s shooting in Telford could not yet be publicly identified. She said two men were still being questioned by police and the investigation was “ongoing”.

    ​The Metropolitan Police are investigating the murder in Hayes and have not commented on speculation that the victim was a member of the Rayners Lane gang.

    Detective Chief Inspector Katherine Goodwin said: "I want to reassure the wider community that my team and I are working hard to find out what led up to this tragic incident."

    A Section 60 public order notice was put in place across a large part of west London on Tuesday night and was extended to last until 4.30am on Thursday. It gives police extra powers to disperse individuals and is usually used when detectives believe there is a danger of a retaliatory attack.

    Tags:
    murder, West Midlands, London, gang wars, gangs
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