Two weeks of action targeting drugs gangs and violent crime
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Drugs with a street value of at least £40,000 and £25,000 in cash were seized during a fortnight of targeted action against drugs gangs and criminals involved in violent crime.
Seventy-six arrests were made between 14 September and 27 September during a number of operations across Essex, with a particular focus in the south and west of the county.
These included arrests linked to six drugs gangs, which resulted in nine people being charged on suspicion of drugs offences.
We also made arrests for suspected weapon offences and other crimes that were identified during police patrols, such as burglaries and drug-driving.
In addition, we safeguarded eight vulnerable people.
“The majority of Essex residents will never be affected by drugs or violent crime and every day we’re working to keep it that way.
“Each day we’re out on patrols and gathering information to target criminals involved in drugs supply and violent crime.
“We also work closely with other agencies to protect young and vulnerable people who are used and exploited by these criminals for their own financial gain.
“We will not stop doing everything we can to make sure our communities and most vulnerable residents are safe.
“There is nowhere to hide in Essex for those involved in drugs and violent crime.”
Chief Inspector Lewis Basford
During the two weeks of action, we executed 14 warrants under the Misuse of Drugs Act as part of investigations into drugs related crime.
Officers carried out regular patrols in addition to their day-to-day patrols and used knife arches to help identify anyone who might have been carrying weapons. They also carried out searches to look for any weapons that might have been hidden, and ensured shops were adhering to the law around selling knives to underage customers.
We also worked closely with partners such as C2C, the Eastern Region Special Operations Unit, and other forces.
Two successful operations disrupted criminals using the roads in Essex, London, and neighbouring counties.
We worked with colleagues from the Metropolitan Police to patrol the borders of Essex and London, including the A127 and A13, between Monday 14 September and Thursday 17 September. This resulted in a total of 43 arrests.
This coincided with another operation, in which we joined colleagues from eight police forces to disrupt drugs gangs using main roads and motorways in and around London between the Tuesday and Thursday.
This resulted in 230 arrests overall and the seizure of weapons, drugs and vehicles, thanks to the efforts of our officers and colleagues from the Met, Surrey, Kent, Hertfordshire, Thames Valley, Hampshire, City of London and British Transport Police.
Chief Inspector Basford said: “Working with neighbouring forces and other agencies is vitally important because these criminal networks often span wide areas and borders.
“We use our combined expertise and resources so we can target and dismantle these gangs and organised crime groups at every level.”
Information from the public is really important in helping us to identify offenders and detect and prevent crime.
You can call us on 101 or report online at https://www.essex.police.uk
Alternatively, you can contact independent charity Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111 or https://crimestoppers-uk.org
Find out more about our work under Operation Sceptre to tackle serious violent crime including knife and drug-related crime, and how we’re working with partners to tackle the issues behind knife crime, at https://www.essex.police.uk/opsceptre