Self-styled ‘boss of Beeston’ jailed over Leeds shooting: Who is Wakkas Butt and why was he deemed a public danger?

Wakkas Butt.
Wakkas Butt.

Wakkas Butt could not be named publicly when the gang injunctions were first imposed in December 2016 due to other ongoing legal proceedings

The orders placed strict limitations on the subjects with a power of arrest for any breaches.

READ MORE: Self-styled ‘boss of Beeston’ jailed over Leeds shooting

To date there have been a total of nine breaches that have resulted in the defendants being brought back to the county court for further sanctions. Butt was previously sentenced to three weeks in prison for breaching his ‘gangbo’.

A total of 94 offences between March 2014 and June 2016 were believed to be linked to the feud, with 87 of those occurring within roughly a square mile of Beeston - the most serious being the attempted murder of a man in a shooting in Middleton Crescent in October 2015. The catalogue of crimes included 10 violent incidents of robbery, assault and kidnap; 30 offences of public order, threats, intimidation and extortion; 24 offences of arson against vehicles and addresses causing more than £200,000 of damage; six drug-related offences where more than £180,000 was recovered; and 22 offences of criminal damage against properties, eight of which saw 4x4 vehicles rammed into the addresses causing more than £100,000 of damage.

The orders were the result of work by Leeds District Serious Organised Crime Unit who conducted comprehensive enquiries to develop a detailed understanding of the context of the incidents that had occurred and to link those to the main suspects.

While a number of arrests were made and charges brought in relation to some of the incidents, it became clear that a wider approach was needed to tackle the gang-related actions of those involved.

Steps were taken to build a case for gang injunctions – dubbed ‘gangbos’ - under the Policing and Crime Act 2009. The Act allows the police or local authority to apply to a county court or the High Court for a civil injunction against an individual who has been shown to be involved in gang-related violence or to have encouraged or assisted it. The orders have since given officers on the local neighbourhood policing team an increased ability to manage the subjects through the various conditions, which has led to a significant reduction in the type of criminal activity the area experienced before.