Cumbria police: drugs seizures doubled

Illegal drugs seized in Cumbria has doubled in the year. Over the last twelve months Cumbria police have seized £1.4m of class A drugs

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£314,000 worth of drugs seized on M6

Police have seized thousands of pounds worth of drugs from a car on the M6.

The quantity of cannabis resin that was found has a street value of £314,000.

Paul Howard, 46, from Birkenhead, Merseyside, was stopped by officers on the motorway near Carlisle yesterday, Tuesday 13 May, at 11:30am.

He is expected to appear at Carlisle Magistrates Court today, Wednesday 14 May.

Woman involved in £130,000 drug supply sentenced

A woman from Silloth has been sentenced to 23 months in prison for her involvement in the importing of £130,000 worth of drugs.

45-year-old Anita Robertson was told her sentence would be suspended for two years.

She appeared in Carlisle Crown Court yesterday, Thursday 1 May, after pleading guilty to helping to import 6.5kg of mephedrone.

She came under suspicion when packages addressed to her arrived at Stansted Airport and Coventry International in August 2013.

The packages contained white crystalline substances which were later confirmed to be Class B controlled drugs.

She was arrested on the 21 August 2013 after the police discovered she had been receiving packages over a seven month period.

“Robertson believed that she could just receive these packages containing illegal drugs and get away with it. However, this case highlights that we are always checking on illegal activity. Once suspicious were raised, then it was only a matter of time before we brought her to justice.

“This investigation prevented a substantial amount of illegal drugs going onto the streets and is another example of the continuing work by Cumbria Police, along with partner agencies to disrupt the importation and distribution of illegal drugs.”

– Andrew Myers, Detective Sergeant, Cumbria Police

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Primary school children 'at risk of drug addiction'

The Press Association findings, released today, indicate that children as young as nine have been referred to treatment centres in the Scottish Borders.

They say their investigation revealed primary school children are being flagged as at risk of becoming addicts.

Treatment experts said the most common reason for children to come into contact with drugs and alcohol is through their parents.

Preventative work is key to heading off misuse among youngsters and nationally, charities have called for improved drugs education in schools.

Read the national story

Reacting to the Press Association findings the chairman of the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee said:

"I am deeply concerned that children so young are clearly gaining access to harmful substances.

"It is right that these youngsters receive the appropriate help but we must look at the source of their problems.

"It is vital that parents take responsibility and additional support is given to them in order to prevent children being exposed to drugs and alcohol in the first place."

– Keith Vaz, chairman, Commons Home Affairs Select Committee
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Hundreds of under-12's 'referred for drug treatment'

The Press Association have approached councils across the UK and found children as young as four being referred by education and children's services to alcohol and drug specialists.

In the Freedom of Information request, more than half of under-13s - 59% - received treatment for cannabis misuse, while a third were treated for alcohol misuse.

A small number abused solvents.

A bedroom at a treatment centre for drug addicts and alcoholics. Credit: PA/PA Archive

Eight-year-olds had been referred to services in Waltham Forest and East Ayrshire, while nine-year-olds had been referred in Herefordshire, Liverpool, Oxfordshire, Rutland, the Scottish Borders and West Berkshire.

Read more: Four-year-olds referred for drug and alcohol treatment

Authorities in Bury, Calderdale, Halton, Hull, Monmouthshire and Rochdale had seen 10-year-olds referred.

Some 366 children aged 12 or under were referred for treatment in 2012/13 in England, according to the most recent figures from Public Health England, compared with 433 in 2011/12.

Prison drug supply disrupted by police

Cumbria Police have arrested three men in connection with the supply of controlled drugs to Haverigg Prison in Millom.

Officers from the Operational Support Unit and the Automatic Number Plate Recognition team conducted a specific operation, named Helmwind, to target and disrupt drug supply into the prison.

As a result of monitoring visits to the prison on Wednesday 23 April:

  • Three men aged 18, 27, and 32 from Manchester were arrested. They were all bailed while enquiries continue
  • Three men from Rochdale were give cannabis warnings
  • Three men were turned away from the prison due to signs of drug misuse in the vehicle there were travelling in.

“We are fully supportive of the work being done by Haverigg Prison to stop drug abuse and by running operational such as these, we help to disrupt the supply into the prison.

“We will continue to run these operations periodically and hope this sends a strong message to anyone who tries to bring drugs into the area, you will be caught and brought to justice”

– Sergeant Darren Bawden, Operational Support Unit, Cumbria Police

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Three arrested in "bad" valium scare

Three people have been arrested in Maryport after a woman was taken to hospital when she took some "bad" valium.

The police have been questioning a woman aged 32 and a 42 year old man and a 29 year old man in connection with the incident.

Cumbria Police say they have seized a significant quantity of pills from Maryport but warn that more may be in circulation in the area.

They're described as being small blue-cloured or similar pills and are being sold by street dealers as valium or "blues".

Anyone who comes across suspicious pills are advised by the police to hand them into their local police station.

The 28 year old woman from Maryport suspected of taking the contaminated pills has been treated overnight at the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven.

Parents warned to be vigilant after used needle found

Parents have been told to watch for dirty needles after one was found by children on a playing field at a primary school in South West Scotland.

Dalbeattie Primary School has sent a letter to parents to re-assure them about safety at the school.

Children are now banned from the playing field and more checks are to be carried out.

Dumfries and Galloway Council said that it had been disposed of safely.

A syringe was found in the school grounds. It was disposed of safely and police visited the school.

Pupils have been given safety advice relating to finding suspicious items. The school has written to parents to inform them of the incident and to reinforce the safety advice.”

– Police Scotland spokesperson

The depute head teacher, Jenny Irving, has sent a letter out to parents at the 300-pupil school to urge them to warn their children against the dangers of picking up needles.

A used needle was found in an area of the playing fields where children are not normally allowed to play. The item was removed and the police were contacted.

I would like to reassure you that the correct procedures to deal with situation were followed. In the meantime we are not allowing the children to play on the field area until more thorough checks are carried out.”

I would be grateful if you would chat to your child/children about what to do if they find any dangerous items. We have advised them to tell an adult but not to touch.

– Jenny Irving, depute head teacher, in letter to parents

We have addressed this in school with all children but your support is much appreciated."

– Jenny Irving, depute head teacher, in letter to parents
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