Council houses in Kettering closed down in bid to disrupt drug trade

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A series of closure orders have been obtained for properties in Kettering as part of a joint effort to disrupt the drug trade.

Orders have been made against properties in Alfred Street, Arthurs Way and New Buildings in Meadow Road after Kettering Council officers presented evidence to the courts that criminal activity and associated anti-social behaviour would not stop unless the properties were closed.

The orders follow a similar move by police in March on a flat in Tresham Street.

John Conway, head of housing at Kettering Council, said: “Drug dealers and their associates have the potential to inflict serious damage on communities as well as destroy lives.

“Kettering Council and Northamptonshire Police will not tolerate this and have taken decisive action to close down properties where the drugs trade is operating.

“Where we have the evidence, we will continue to do so in the future.”

Each order is valid for three months and makes it a criminal offence for any person including the tenant or occupant to enter the address.

At each court hearing, magistrates were satisfied that it was necessary to make the order so that persons engaging in disorderly, offensive or criminal behaviour could be prevented from entering the premises.

Insp Julie Mead from Northants Police said: “People dealing drugs and committing anti-social behaviour can have a significant impact on nearby residents and we are determined to tackle those people whose actions have such a detrimental impact on other people’s lives.

“We have been working closely with Kettering Council to gather evidence and present it before the courts in order to obtain these closure orders, and will continue to do so.

“I would urge anyone with concerns about drug use or anti-social behaviour to report it to us on 101. Alternatively, concerns can be reported to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.”

A local resident affected by the anti-social behaviour taking place at one of the properties, who did not want to be named, said: “Since the closure order was granted, our sense of community has returned and we feel safer and more relaxed.

“I think the combined efforts of the council and the police has produced an excellent outcome for not only for the neighbouring residents but the local area as well.

“We are all extremely grateful and cannot thank them enough for supporting us and acting swiftly to resolve this problem.”