Police step up war on drugs, danger drivers and anti-social behaviour in Northumberland

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Police have pledged to clamp down on criminal activity and anti-social behaviour in two Northumberland towns.

Since the end of January, neighbourhood police teams in Ashington and Bedlington, with support from some of Northumbria Police’s firearms officers, have carried out an operation to disrupt the supply of drugs, as well as target dangerous drivers and tackle anti-social behaviour.

As part of the operation, officers have seized 72 vehicles, several of which were linked to drug supply – and more than half of them have been crushed to stop them being used for criminality in the future.

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In addition, 10 people have been arrested – seven for driving whilst over the prescribed drug limit and three for possession of class A drugs with intent to supply.

Insp Phil PattersonInsp Phil Patterson
Insp Phil Patterson

Neighbourhood Inspector Phil Patterson praised officers for the intelligence gathering which had played a vital role in the operation.

Insp Patterson said: “These fantastic results have been in response to outstanding intelligence gathering by officers.

“A big part of this operation has included seizing suspected drug dealer’s vehicles at every opportunity and keeping them off our roads.

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“In addition to this, a speed camera van was deployed across Ashington and we have identified over 40 offenders who will be dealt with by either driver awareness schemes or prosecution.”

Along with the crushed cars linked to drug supply, officers have also seized three quad bikes and a motorcycle connected to anti-social behaviour in Ashington, with the three quad bikes bring crushed.

Extra patrols are being deployed to combat areas identified as key targets for offenders both in relation to the disorder and drug offences.

Insp Patterson said efforts to combat problems in the two towns would continue, and said: “Our work doesn’t stop here. We are looking at long term solutions that will benefit those impacted by these forms of criminality.

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“We will continue to work alongside partners to keep communities safe and areas free of drugs and disorder.”

Anyone with any concerns should report them to police via 101 or online through the website beta.northumbria.police.uk/.