Violent crime in Cheetham Hill 'has been halved' following police crackdown, officers say

Police before a raid in Cheetham Hill, Manchester. Credit: ITV Granada

An operation to combat organised crime and violence in what has been dubbed 'the counterfeit capital' has reduced violent incidents by almost 50%, police say.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) say since launching 'Operation Vulcan' almost five months ago in Cheetham Hill, in the north of Manchester, there has been an increase in arrests for trademark offences.

It is believed more than 30 organised crime gangs work in the area, with counterfeit goods proven to have strong links to human trafficking and terrorist organisations.

GMP has launched 'Operation Vulcan' to dismantle the gangs responsible and clear out the counterfeits.

Officers say since the operation began:

  • Almost a 50% drop in public order offences, which includes harassment and violent disturbance.

  • A 60% reduction in vehicles crimes.

  • A 50% reduction in theft from person.

  • A 50% decrease of violence with injury.

  • Granada Reports sent an undercover team to the UK's counterfeit capital Cheetham Hill on 3 February

What is Operation Vulcan?

GMP describe Operation Vulcan as a mission to "tackle money laundering, illegal drugs manufacture and supply, the exploitation of vulnerable people, street level antisocial behaviour and intimidation; and to ruthlessly target those prolific criminals who are profiting from the misery that they have brought to decent and law-abiding people."

Greater Manchester Police in Cheetham Hill Credit: ITV Granada

To do this, Greater Manchester Police pledged to:

  • Increase intelligence to identify key drug supply networks.

  • Ensuring consistent messaging to local communities and providing pathways for community intelligence.

  • Raising awareness of the damage caused by illicit prescription medication and illegal street drugs.

  • Regularly review intelligence to target key nominals and the locations in which they operate.

  • In February Granada Reports' Anna Youssef made a special report on Cheetham Hill

Detective Superintendent Neil Blackwood, who is leading Operation Vulcan, said: “Our officers have been relentlessly policing the area, and these figures show that we have made a great start.

"Our presence is a clear deterrent, and it has given us the resources needed to conduct more stop searches where appropriate and make more arrests.

“I am pleased that progress is being made but there is still a long way to go to further prevent and reduce the criminality in the area."

Councillor Luthfur Rahman, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council said: "The fall in crime is testament to the incredible impact of Operation Vulcan, and truly shows the power of partnership working.

"This is a proud moment, but it is only the first step in our journey towards turning Strangeways into a safer, more prosperous neighbourhood."

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