Ten more people arrested today in county lines drugs raids in Swindon

Alert message sent 21/01/2020 16:49:00

Information sent on behalf of Wiltshire Police


We’ve arrested 10 more people today (21/01) as part of a series of raids cracking down on county lines drugs gangs. 

Officers from across the Force have been targeting those involved in the supply of class A drugs in Swindon over the past two days.

Yesterday, seven people were arrested and more than £20,000 worth of class A drugs were seized during warrants at various locations across the town including Abbey Meads, Parks and the town centre.

These people have since been released under investigation to allow further enquiries to continue. 

Today, we have seized approximately £6,000 worth of class A drugs and arrested the following:

A 32-year-old woman from Swindon on suspicion of possession with intent to supply class A drugs during a warrant in Sheppard Street
A 44-year-old man from Swindon on suspicion of being concerned in the offer to supply class A drugs following a warrant in Penhill yesterday
A 21-year-old man from Swindon on suspicion of supply of a class A drug
A 16-year-old boy on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of class A and B drugs following a warrant in Welcombe Avenue
A 44-year-old man from Swindon on suspicion of possession of a class A drug following a warrant in Sheppard Street
A 19-year-old man from London on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of class A drugs in the Swindon area
A 41-year-old man from Swindon was arrested in Akers Way today on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of class A drugs
A 42-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply class A drugs following a warrant in Glebe Place.
A 19-year-old woman from Highworth on suspicion of concerned in the supply of class A drugs. She was also arrested for driving whilst disqualified and driving without insurance when she was stopped driving along Manchester Road by officers today.
A 26-year-old man from Crawley was arrested during a warrant in Newhall Street on suspicion of breaching court bail conditions. 

The 16-year-old arrested has since been released under investigation. 

The rest remain in custody for further questioning.

Det Insp Paul Franklin is leading this week’s operation.

He said: “Today has been another successful day for us in our fight to disrupt dealer lines here in Swindon, and it’s not over yet. So far this week, we’ve arrested 17 people. 

“Those arrested yesterday have been interviewed and released under investigation to allow us further time to investigate and conduct extensive enquiries to determine the full scale of their involvement, including any items they may have obtained through proceeds of crime. Once this has been done, evidence will be presented to the CPS. This is the same process we followed during Operation Jetway last year, which saw us successfully arrest 63 people – many of whom are still going through the court process for sentencing at the moment.”

During one of the warrants in Penhill yesterday, a number of suspicious items were located. As a result of this, the fire service and Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) were called to the scene.

Although our enquiries are continuing, we believe the items discovered have been used in the production of illegal drugs and these have been seized for further analysis. There is no wider risk to the public.

There is likely to be less police activity at the address today.

County lines refers to the drug dealing methodology which involves criminal networks often from larger cities expanding their activities into smaller towns and rural areas.

Dealers typically use a single phone line to facilitate the supply of class A drugs – frequently heroin and crack cocaine - to customers who are often vulnerable drug users within our communities. The line becomes a valuable brand and is protected with violence and intimidation.

Det Insp Franklin added: “I hope the public feel reassured by our work this week. This has been months in the planning and has required a huge amount of dedication from all involved. We will continue to target those who think they can supply illegal drugs under our radar within our communities.”

This week’s operation falls under Project Optimise – our collaborative approach to Serious and Organised Crime in Wiltshire and Swindon. This incorporates many areas of the demand we see on a daily basis, including county lines, modern slavery and child sex abuse.  

If you suspect drug activity in your neighbourhood, call us on 101.

 
Message sent by
Katie Bond (Police, Media Officer, Wiltshire)

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