Thousands of pounds seized as part of police county lines drugs crackdown

230720 - Cumbria Police car stockshot - For use after 22/07/20
Thousands of pounds were recovered from under the front seat of a car in Carlisle. Credit: Cumbria Police

A Cumbria Police county lines drug crackdown has seen thousands of pounds recovered in Carlisle.

Numerous arrests were made alongside the recovery of £10,000 from a vehicle.

The week-long operation saw the police focus on county lines drug crime in the county.

Police visited various schools and groups to warn them about exploitation where they spoke to more than 1,100 people.

Between 4 March and 10 March, Cumbria Police stepped up their efforts and enhanced active investigations.

Detective Chief Inspector Andy Myers, head of Cumbria Police’s serious and organised crime unit, said: “This is just a snapshot of the work our officers and staff do all year round to tackle suspected county lines crime.

“We are unrelenting in our pursuit of all drug traffickers, including those operating using the county lines model.

“One of our main aims is also to prevent people being drawn into county lines, including diverting children and young people away from a way of life that is massively damaging to their own communities and their future prospects.”

What was the result from the week of work focusing on county lines?

  • The arrest of four people in the Stainmore area, with a quantity of suspected MCAT – otherwise known as mephedrone – seized.

  • The seizure of cocaine and a baton torch weapon as a man was arrested in Carlisle.

  • The seizure of £10,000 from under the driver’s seat of a car that had visited Carlisle from outside the county.

  • Arrest of a teenager on suspicion of possession of drugs with intent to supply after a large quantity of cannabis was seized in Carlisle.

DCI Myers added: “County lines can bring misery to communities, in the form of drug dealing and serious violence.“That is why we work to prevent drugs gangs making inroads in the first place and stopping people being drawn in.”

Cumbria Police carried out work with other agencies throughout the week.

This included work with The Children's Society alongside the British Transport Police.

DCI Myers added: “Drug supply can involve the exploitation of some the most vulnerable members of the community: children, young people and vulnerable adults.

“The people involved in this world use and abuse our communities and line their pockets by ruining lives and badly affecting the neighbourhoods you live in.

“They blight the lives of the people working for them and exploited by them, cause addiction in the people buying their drugs - and then there are the knock-on effect of anti-social behaviour and associated crime.

“But to keep up that work we need the information and intelligence to keep coming to us.

“Help us to protect your communities.”

How to spot county lines?

Cumbria Police have issued this advice to highlight the signs and symptoms to look out for in vulnerable young people:

  • Travelling alone, frequently, particularly in school hours or late at night.

  • Looking lost or in unfamiliar surroundings.

  • Appearing anxious, frightened, angry or displaying other behaviour that make you worried about them.

  • Being in possession of more than one phone.

  • Carrying lots of cash.

Cumbria’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall, said: “Yet again, our police are demonstrating through robust action that dealing in drugs will not be tolerated and that every effort will be taken to catch those who deal in this awful trade and bring them to justice.

“This is another extremely good example of the work continually carried out by the police to bear down on drug dealers and the county lines gangs who operate this damaging trade preying on vulnerable people.

“Drugs have a devastating effect on communities and on the lives of the vulnerable young people that are lured in to transporting and selling drugs with the promise of a better life, when the reality they become trapped in a life of destructive crime.

“The police are doing a superb job and I commend everyone involved in yet another outstanding operation. Whilst the police are and will continue to take very firm action, we can all help by giving any and all information where we have it, intelligence is vital for the police to target resource and stop this awful trade.

“The public know their area better than anyone so if you see anything suspicious, please report it to the police on 101, 999 in an emergency or anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

“It’s so important that we continue to tackle county lines together and create a safer Cumbria for everyone.”

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