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Security cameras could yield valuable evidence in London terrorist roundup

Published by Jennifer on July 2, 2007 7:37 AM

It's been a busy weekend for the Scotland Yard. Two gasoline-and-nail filled car bombs were discovered in Piccadilly Square, one of the busiest neighborhoods in central London. Thankfully the bombs were diffused before any damage was done, but officials are scrambling to find a solution, and some suspects, before the situation escalates.

The UK is known for its dependence on security cameras. CCTV cameras are omnipresent, and with 4.2 million cameras recording around the clock, there is one camera for every 14 people in the country, and on an average day, a Briton is recorded 300 times. Footage from these cameras has been used successfully in the past to identify criminal suspects - as was the case in the 2005 London Underground bombings, where police successfully identified and arrested a terror suspect based on footage from outside an underground station. Now, Scotland Yard and government officials are scouring miles and miles of tape from Thursday night to try and find identifying information about possible suspects.

No concrete information has yet surfaced about the identities of the persons who built and parked the car bombs, but police are hoping that history will repeat itself and a successful identification will be made before disaster strikes. It is probable that the cars, before being left at their final destination, were driven through London's "Ring of Steel," a particularly reinforced area around London's central business districts which was designed to capture the license plates of every car that enters and leaves the area. Officials hope that once this demographic information is ascertained, it will fit into the puzzle created by physical evidence and a mobile phone also left at the crime scene. Until then, though, all they can do is watch, and wait.

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