Hinckley County Lines drugs gangs taken out of business by police
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Police have been conducting an investigation for a number of months in order to execute a large number of warrants to target the supply of class A drugs in Hinckley.
In the last two weeks they have arrested 43 people concerned in buying and selling drugs – known as County Lines. This includes a number of significant individuals who are believed to have been controlling the “County Lines”.
The operation began on Monday 20 September and has led to 20 people being charged with drugs offences – from supplying class A and conspiracy to supply class A and class B. Fifteen others remain under investigation with the hard work by the team continuing and more charges are expected.
Criminals from larger cities move to provincial areas, often into vulnerable people’s houses in order to take over their lives by establishing a drug supply criminal enterprise in that area. This can have significant consequences for communities and vulnerable people whilst also raising crime and anti-social behaviour in the area.
The police operation, called Operation Impose, has executed 73 warrants, searching 76 addresses. During the operation, officers recovered almost £200,000 in cash, various offensive weapons and around 6kg of heroin with a value in excess of £300,000 – not taking into account the street value.
The Senior Investigating Officer for the operation Detective Inspector Rob Arthur, said: “This has been the culmination of a lot of work by the team and we’re really pleased we’ve been able to arrest and charge a large number of people with drug related offences.
“This operation has enabled us to get criminals off the streets in order to prevent them supplying their drugs to others.
“But more than just disrupting the supply lines, we are working with local organisations to get help for those who want it.
“Turning Point have been key in the work we’ve been doing to get immediate access – sometimes even while the offenders are in custody – to the help and support for them to be able to kick their habits.”
Sarah Hancock-Smith, from Turning Point, said: “Through working in Partnership with Leicestershire Police, Turning Point have been able to pro-actively reach out and support vulnerable individuals in the Hinckley area in need of drug treatment following large amounts of drugs being taken off the streets of Hinckley.
“Turning Point recovery workers have been door to door with local PCSOs making sure that those in need of treatment right now get it, as well as supporting family members and the community. Anyone who finds themselves needing support for drug or alcohol use can contact Turning Point on 0330 3036000 or visit www.turning-point.co.uk/services/leicestershire.”
Inspector Jamie Osborne from the Neighbourhood Policing Area for Hinckley and Blaby, said: “This is hugely positive outcome for the people of Hinckley. County Lines gangs are using places like Hinckley to sell drugs and ruin people’s lives.
“There is no doubt that a significant police operation like this will benefit our communities. The work we’ve completed with Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council will have been invaluable in disrupting the criminality.
“We still need to remain vigilant to those who might try to sell drugs in our area, and we need to support those that are vulnerable to County Lines who need specialist help so the work continues but in the meantime this operation has significantly impacted on a number of County Lines in Hinckley.
“If anyone has any information about drug related intelligence, call 101, report online via the force website or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”
This enforcement operation has been carried out with the help of funding from the National County Lines Coordination Centre