Thirty arrests made during County Lines week of action
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Thirty arrests were made and five people charged during a busy week of action for officers dealing with ‘County Lines’ activity in Staffordshire.
Cash totalling £3,000 was seized as well as 210 deals of crack cocaine, 64 deals of heroin and 15 deals of cannabis.
Seven vulnerable people were safeguarded and six weapons seized.
Three cuckooed addresses were visited and five vulnerable people and two vulnerable juveniles safeguarded.
In the last week we have also secured several convictions relating to County Lines offending.
A 28-year-old West Bromwich man was jailed for six years nine months for possession with intent to supply cocaine in Cannock. Police in Stafford have also secured convictions for a man found with 1kg of cannabis in Stone and a 21-year-old man dealing heroin and crack cocaine in Stafford.
Forces and agencies across England and Wales worked together from 7-13 October in an Intensification Week targeting this activity, which is where groups of young men from an urban area move into smaller towns to distribute crack cocaine or heroin.
The groups use vulnerable young people, often aged 14 to 24, to traffic the drugs after deals are agreed remotely through a mobile or ‘line.’
The young people involved may be coerced into this activity through debt, drugs use, grooming, threats or violence. Typical risk factors for those involved are mental health problems, drug use, debt, being known to the care system, and being prone to missing episodes.
Detective Superintendent O’Toole, of Staffordshire Police, said: “This has been another busy and intensive week of activity focusing on protecting the vulnerable in our communities and dealing with offenders.
“We’re working hard to tackle this challenge by disrupting those who would bring drugs into our county. We will arrest and charge those dealing drugs but more importantly look to safeguard the young and vulnerable who may be coerced or pressured into this type of activity.”