Beggars and drug addicts target generous people at Clapham Junction station

Clapham Junction Station

Clapham Junction Station

First published in News Wandsworth Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

Beggars are preying on the good will of people using Clapham Junction as the weather gets warmer, police warn.

Officers have already seen an increase in anti-social behaviour, such as begging and street drinking, in the area around the busy station.

Begging is an offence and a method for those who have fallen on bad times to fund drug addictions.

However, arrests are only made after persistent offending when they are taken into police custody to undergo a drug test. Those testing positive must undertake a drug assessment scheme.

On Tuesday, April 8, officers came across one offender who by his own admission regularly travels into Clapham Junction to fund his heroin addiction.

Having been given numerous referrals and warnings he was arrested and charged. An appeal is being made to the court to extend an existing ASBO prohibiting him from acting in such a manner in his home county, to include all London boroughs.

PC Darren Sims, from Northcote Safer Neighbourhoods Team, said. "There's a lot of good will in Battersea and we regularly see donations being made directly to people begging for money.

"What isn't always apparent is what that money is used for and the results could prove fatal, with the money from the purchase of drugs being fed into organised crime syndicates.

"Consider making donations by either purchasing a meal voucher for £1 from the Ace of Clubs shop, or donate your time or money to St Mark's 'Church on Wednesday'.

"That way you'll help ensure that not only do the person get a meal, but also advice which could help change their lives."

There are multiple organisations locally which help the homeless and those with drug or alcohol addictions.

These include the Ace of Clubs, which has a shop on St John's Road and St Marks Church. There is also the Wandsworth Integrated drug and alcohol service (IDAS) based in the St John's health centre.

Do you regularly see people begging in Wandsworth? Tell us what you think by emailing ssleigh@london.newsquest.co.uk

Comments (3)

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2:52pm Thu 17 Apr 14

QPR4Me says...

These beggars prey on the foolish and the gullible.

By all means give to charities etc. but never give to street beggars. It only encourages them.
These beggars prey on the foolish and the gullible. By all means give to charities etc. but never give to street beggars. It only encourages them. QPR4Me
  • Score: 2

2:44pm Fri 18 Apr 14

buggsie says...

I suppose the travelling public can expect more crime - thanks to the cuts in police and no doubt railway police also.
According to a letter through my door yesterday - Wandsworth Councillors are awarding themselves huge pay increases - whilst cutting services to the elderly & young - nice one eh ??
I suppose the travelling public can expect more crime - thanks to the cuts in police and no doubt railway police also. According to a letter through my door yesterday - Wandsworth Councillors are awarding themselves huge pay increases - whilst cutting services to the elderly & young - nice one eh ?? buggsie
  • Score: 2

2:44pm Sat 19 Apr 14

QPR4Me says...

buggsie.

Are you old enough to remember when Wandsworth was Labour controlled?

I am and wouldn't wish it on my own worst enemy.

I saw the leaflet that they shoved through my letterbox, about the local ward that I live in, it was inaccurate, full of lies and stank of desperation.
buggsie. Are you old enough to remember when Wandsworth was Labour controlled? I am and wouldn't wish it on my own worst enemy. I saw the leaflet that they shoved through my letterbox, about the local ward that I live in, it was inaccurate, full of lies and stank of desperation. QPR4Me
  • Score: -3

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