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Police drug squad continue to make arrests in Harlow

Crime / Wed 8th Mar 2017 at 10:38am

Essex Police

MORE than 20 suspected drug dealers were arrested, and drugs, weapons and vehicles were seized during a week of action aimed at cracking down on drug and gang-related crime.

Officers from Essex Police’s Operation Raptor teams in the North, South and West of the county worked around the clock supported by specialist colleagues from across the force as well as the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to target those involved in drug supply.

During the week of action – which ran from Monday February 27 to Friday March 3 – the teams carried out visible operations including a weapons sweep in Southend and proactive foot patrols in Basildon.

They also used automated number plate recognition (ANPR) technology during operations in Chelmsford, Thurrock and Harlow to target known dealers using the roads. In Clacton and Colchester the North Raptor team also joined forces with Trading Standards to target shops selling knives to youngsters.

As well as this activity the Raptor teams executed a total of 17 warrants at properties in Southend, Basildon, Brentwood, Thurrock, Harlow, Chelmsford, Clacton and Colchester.

During these warrants the Raptor teams seized more than £3,000 in cash, three kilos of what is believed to be cannabis and more than 300 plants of the drug, 1.5kilos of the suspected Class B drug amphetamine as well as substantial amounts of the suspected Class A drugs heroin and crack cocaine. The West Raptor team also unearthed a large cannabis factory in Brentwood.

Det Chief Insp Jason Hendy, who led the week-long crackdown, said: “We are delighted with the success of the week of action which saw 22 suspected drug dealers arrested, 17 warrants executed and drugs worth thousands of pounds seized before they hit the streets of our county.

“I hope this action sends out a strong message to those involved in drug and gang-related crime that we will target you, arrest you and bring you before the courts.”

Chief Supt Paul Wells, Essex Police’s lead for Operation Raptor added: “Our Raptor teams in the North, South and West work tirelessly every day to proactively target those involved in drug and gang related crime.

“However this week of action enabled our Raptor teams to call on the support of specialist colleagues across the rest of Essex Police – including the Operational Support Group, the Special Constabulary, Community and Local Policing team colleagues – as well as the MPS to double their efforts and work around the clock to target drug dealers.

“The daily work of our Raptor teams continues and I hope those involved in gang and drug-related crime realise that there is no place for them to hide in Essex.”

If you have information about drug or gang-related crime in your community, call Essex Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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