29 arrests in Suffolk in police crackdown on county lines drug gangs

Stock image of police

29 arrests have been made in Suffolk in relation to county lines drug offences - Credit: PA WIRE

Police in Suffolk made 29 arrests and took £10,000 worth of drugs off the streets in a week as part of a crackdown on county lines drug gang activity.

From Monday, police took part in a national week of action against the on-going threat of county lines to continue to "make Suffolk a hostile environment for criminals to operate in".

Officers made the 29 arrests for a variety of offences, as well as conducting welfare visits to 111 properties where police understood the residents to be victims of ‘cuckooing’ – where drug dealers take over the property of a vulnerable person.

Police seized cash in excess of £5,000 and drugs with an estimated street value of £10,000.

A selection of weapons, including a machete, zombie knives and a taser, were also recovered.

In Essex, specialist officers made 49 arrests, seized almost £100,000 in cash, 300g of loose Class A drugs and more than 1,100 prepared wraps of cocaine. 

Eight county lines were disrupted and 11 people charged with offences. 

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Suffolk's police and crime commissioner Tim Passmore said: "The threat to society from the illegal drugs business is huge – it wrecks lives, and whole communities are affected.

Suffolk's Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Suffolk's police and crime commissioner Tim Passmore - Credit: Archant

"Sadly, the drug barons often prey on individuals who are at risk and very vulnerable.

"I would like to congratulate all agencies involved in this work, but especially the Constabulary.

"The results speak for themselves and build on the excellent work already being done.

"That said, there is no room for complacency and I can assure everyone I will do everything possible to provide the resources necessary to try and eliminate this problem from our towns and villages.

"There should be no tolerance by anyone for this illicit trade."

Detective Superintendent Dave Giles, of Suffolk police, added: "This was another productive week in terms of arrests, gathering intelligence and engaging with vulnerable people.

"Although it’s important to say our work to address the issue of county lines and drug supply is something we tackle all year round.  

“We are working harder than ever to crack down on county lines, which bring misery to communities in the form of drug dealing and violence.

“Tackling county lines is in equal parts about safeguarding victims, shutting down the line and targeting line holders.

"This is not an issue we can tackle alone with local agencies, charities, partners, schools, parents all need to help us protect the most vulnerable in our communities.

"Illegal drug activity and associated crime can have a detrimental effect on communities and I would like to reassure residents that we will continue to act on information provided to us."

Temporary Detective Chief Inspector Neal Miller, of the Essex Police Serious Violence Unit, said: “Whilst these results clearly show the work we are carrying out is working, we are under no illusions that some groups of people do think they are above the law and they do think they can sell their product in Essex. But our message has been consistently clear; drugs and drug dealers are not welcome in our county."

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