Brother's tribute to 'lovely' teenager stabbed to death in Holloway

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The brother of a 17-year-old boy who was stabbed to death in a London street has paid tribute to a "lovely" and "generous" teenager.

The boy, who has been named locally as Vaso Kakko, from Canonbury, was found by members of the public, but was pronounced dead at the scene in Holloway on Monday night.

His brother Bruno Kakko, 25, told the Evening Standard: "He was just a lovely, nice guy who was always happy and smiley and loved playing around a lot. He was always very generous to his friends and family.

"He loved going out a lot, he was not a stay-at-home type. We just can't get our heads round it at the moment. We have no idea who would target him."

Vaso's death makes him the 14th person under 19 to be stabbed to death in the city this year alone - exactly two weeks after the previous reported case of Alfie Stone, 18, in West Ruislip.

According to the Metropolitan Police, the youngest during the string of fatal attacks this year was 15-year-old Alan Cartwright - who was killed on February 27 in Islington.

Vaso was found was less than a five-minute walk away from the spot where 16-year-old Ben Kinsella was stabbed to death during a row after a night out in 2008.

Campaigners fear that attacks like these are on the rise as figures from the Metropolitan Police show the total number of knife crime offences resulting in injury across the city have so far risen by 270 cases in the last year - to 2,794 between January and September this year, compared to 2,524 over the same period in 2014.

While separate figures from the force show that there has not been a dramatic recent increase in "serious youth violence", which includes knife and gun crime among young people, a total of 600 cases were recorded in July this year - the highest number since the same time in 2011.

In October, the Met told the BBC: "There has been a disturbing increase in the number of murders and stabbings, often with young black men the victims.

Operations are under way to crack down on the level of knife crime among young people in the city, including last month's Operation Spectre, which saw police seize over 120 knives and 50 other 'offensive weapons' and make 69 arrests over the half term week.

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "Any young life lost is one too many and far too many families have been devastated by the impact of knife crime. We are committed to doing all we can to reduce knife crime, to tackle London's gangs and take more knives and weapons off our streets."

Yohana Franklin, manager for the Ben Kinsella Trust - set up by the family of Ben Kinsella to help tackle knife crime in his memory, said: "Our thoughts are with the family of the victim as we know just what they are going through.

"We need to take more early prevention measures by educating people at a young age. We need better police stop and search powers that are used in the right way, and we need stricter sentences for people caught carrying knives.

"The responsibility needs to start at home and parents and families need to be more open about the seriousness of knife crime. Essentially, we need a more full and rounded approach, because whatever is already being done clearly isn't enough."