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  1. ITV Report

Police launch Christmas crackdown on street drug dealing

Police will be visible on the streets during Operation Season's Greetings to help keep people safe. Credit: UTV

Police have been deployed to target street level drug dealing and other criminality during the busy festive season.

Dedicated resources are being deployed across all districts in Northern Ireland to deter and detect criminality and provide visible reassurance during some of the busiest weeks of the year.

Officers will be visible on the streets and accessible to local communities, businesses and those who are out and about shopping and enjoying the festive build up in order to deter illegal drug activity.

Police made almost 8,000 drug seizures from October 2018 to the end of September 2019 - an increase of just over 10% on the previous year.

There were 3,618 drug-related arrests in that same period - an increase of 9% on the previous year.

7,941
drug seizures by PSNI from 1 October 2018 - 30 September 2019

Despite the increased number of drug seizures over the last number of years - drug supply and drug taking is still affecting many communities.

Chief Superintendent Jonathan Roberts said: “Tackling street level drug dealing is a priority for us and we are all too aware of the devastating effect that drugs have on individuals, their families and communities.

“In the run up to Christmas we want to send a clear message that there is no space for illegal drug activity in our communities.

“Over the coming weeks we will be running operations focused on removing drugs from our streets and targeting drug dealers.”

Ch Sup Roberts continued: “Information from the public is vital in helping us to target operations and identify those responsible for drugs activity on our streets. You know your own area and you know what happens within it.

“If you know of anyone who is dealing drugs in your local area then please contact us by phoning 101.

“You can also provide information to the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”