Convicted London gang member arrested in Moldova following manhunt

A notorious gang member man who escaped from prison in Turkey while serving a 21-year-sentence for offences in the UK has been arrested. Izzet Eren, 39, who is a Turkish national was detained in Chisinau, Moldova yesterday (26 May).

Extradition proceedings are under way in Moldova. Eren was jailed in the UK in 2015 for firearms offences. While serving his sentence, he was transferred to a prison in Turkey in August 2019, and absconded from custody a month later.

Back in 2016, Izzet Eren created a plot to escape out of a prison van as he was being transported from Wormwood Scrubs prison to Wood Green Crown Court. The plan was foiled when armed police swooped on their vehicles as they were parked near the North London court. During the operation an officer shot dead one of the gang, Jermaine Baker, 28, from Tottenham.

Eren had earlier pleaded guilty to several offences after police caught him on a stolen motorbike carrying a loaded pistol in Stamford Hill. Izzet Eren is thought to be a senior member of the Tottenham Boys, also known as the Tottenham Turks, according to the MailOnline.

He had been on his way to court last year for the attempted gangland assassination of members of the rival Hackney Bombers, and plotted an escape to avoid jail. Members of the rival gangs are all from southern Turkey and are heavily involved in the importation of heroin.

While the attempt in 2016 failed, Eren escaped prison in Turkey, where he was serving a 21-year sentence. Commander Fiona Mallon, Specialist Crime, said: “I thank the Moldovan authorities, the National Crime Agency and the Crown Prosecution Service for their assistance in achieving this significant outcome.

“The Metropolitan Police Serious Crime Manhunt team works around the clock to track down the criminals ‘most wanted’ by the Met. In this case, a hugely complex investigation was launched to establish Eren’s whereabouts, with a wide range of investigative and sensitive intelligence opportunities exploited.

“This arrest sends a clear message to all those who commit serious crime in London: if you run, we will locate you and you will be brought to justice.”

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