North Essex police launch operation to target drug dealers

13:29 21 May 2014

Police in North Essex have launched an operation to target criminal gangs travelling into the area from outside the county.

The dedicated team has been put together to bring down dealers who have been selling illegal drugs on the streets and in properties in the North Local Policing Area.

Detectives will work closely with uniformed officers and partner agencies in major towns and cities across the Braintree, Uttlesford, Colchester, Tendring, Chelmsford and Maldon districts.

The operation was launched after intelligence indicated that criminals were believed to be generating revenue through the sale of drugs of more than £4,000 a day from each major town in the area.

The new team has already seen some success after carrying out a raid at an address in Clacton last week. More than 300 wraps of suspected class A drugs were recovered and have been sent for forensic analysis.

Two men were also arrested. A 20-year-old man from London on suspicion of possession with intent to supply drugs, and a 33-year-old Clacton man on suspicion of the possession of class B drugs.

They have both been bailed pending further police enquiries and analysis of the recovered property.

Chief Supint Carl O’Malley, who has set up the team, said: “The aim of the operation is not only to disrupt the supply of illegal drugs to North Essex but also to tackle the associated violence that these gangs can bring.

“Essex is generally a very safe place, especially for law-abiding members of the public, but we do know that violence between rivals involved in drug dealing is happening.

“Their numbers are not large but no-one in Essex should have to put up with this type of behaviour in their neighbourhoods and I want to tackle the problem head on.

“I am not willing to tolerate the culture and behaviour of these people. This operation will be intelligence led, and we will be drawing information together from a number of sources.

“I would urge members of our community to come forward and tell us about what they either know or suspect is happening on their streets.

“It is this information that will make this operation effective, reducing the supply of drugs and the violence it can bring with it.”

Anyone with information about drug dealing or the gangs involved in North Essex can contact the team at Braintree Police Station on 101 or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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