A new series co-produced between the BBC and The Open University offers viewers a fascinating insight into the dark and brutal world of organised crime.
The five-part series was filmed over two years with fly-on-the-wall access to Greater Manchester Police and follows officers on the frontline as they battle against organised crime gangs. The first two episodes are in March with the remaining three scheduled for May.
The first episode kicks off in Central Manchester when police are called after a man is snatched from his home by an armed gang in front of his wife and children and then held hostage and tortured for a ransom. After police receive intelligence that the gang have a hitlist and are planning more kidnaps, a specialist team of detective’s race to identify and take down these dangerous criminals. What follows is a raw and terrifying glimpse into organised crime in Manchester, the violence that gangs are prepared to carry out, and the efforts of the police in trying to bring the offenders to justice.
Senior Lecturer in Law, Hugh McFaul, who consulted on the series alongside Senior Lecturer in Law Francine Ryan and Senior Lecturer in the School of Psychology & Counselling Dr Zoe Walkington who works with the Centre for Policing Research and Learning (CPRL), said:
"These hard-hitting programmes provide unique insights into complex organised crime investigations. Along with my OU psychology and law colleagues, I have consulted on the development of the programmes and developed learning resources to provide additional context to the series. Given my public engagement work in the Open Justice Centre, I’ve been particularly keen to provide opportunities for viewers to learn more about the law and the justice system. Check out the Open Learn page to discover more about the law on “no comment” interviews and how judges decide a sentence. There’s even a chance to test how good you are at identifying suspects from CCTV footage!"