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July 22 , 2010

The Villain


The day the burka bandit hit the King Kebab mini mosque and sparked an international incident, Detective Constable “Metal” Mike Malloy was raiding his brother in law’s scrap yard. It was good solid CID work, the sort he enjoyed, so whenever the stats needed a boost he would borrow a couple of PCs from the relief, a handful of PCSOs and a dog handler for good measure and they would roar down the Old Kent Road in unmarked cars and a couple of vans blues-and-two’s going full blast and turn the place over in fine old style.
Over his twenty years in the job “Metal” Mike had become a past master in the technique of raiding premises, and every time he would burst into the office, scowl menacingly and announce: “OK, everybody stay put – this is a police raid!” And Alex Donnelly, his brother-in-law would look up from his desk with tired, patient eyes and reply: “You got a warrant this time, Michael?” To which Malloy would invariably respond: “Since when did I need a warrant, Alex, this is family business.” With a sigh Donnelly would push his work aside, produce a concertina print out of his scrap register for official scrutiny, and exchange pleasantries on family affairs while the raiding party, suitably equipped in loaned hard hats and steel toe caps to avoid infringing Health and Safety scrambled over the acres of junk in the yard outside.
When it was all over “Metal” Mike would return to the station, de-brief his team, crank up the system and input the “dynamic intel” in meticulous detail. The Borough had never had a more conscientious crime intelligence analyst than DC Malloy and nobody seemed unduly concerned that the monthly crime profiles uploaded to The Yard’s number crunchers appeared to relate exclusively to the activities of Southside Ferrous Factors, Alex Donnelly’s scrap metal business. Malloy could be relied upon for big number crime stats which kept the dream factory happy, and that was all that mattered.
Of course “Metal” Mike’s preoccupation with his brother in law’s scrap yard was not as simple as might appear at face value. For one thing, Detective Constable Malloy was blissfully ignorant of the fact that Donnelly really was a high-class villain and that was why he never complained to the brass about the seemingly unwarranted intrusion into his business. Similarly Alex Donnelly, who felt quite confident in his ability to hoodwink his numbskull brother-in-law was unaware of the fact that the Borough’s glowing crime stats had risen through the system and had impressed NSY’s Serious and Organised Crime Command. So much so that unbeknown to him, Donnelly had been elevated to the rarefied status of a Zatopec target and circulated to all London-wide crime squads.

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