Northamptonshire drugs operation charges 87 people and seizes £250,000 of goods
A police operation to crack down on drugs has resulted in 105 arrests and 87 people being charged in Northamptonshire since January.
Operation Viper was created in January 2019 to tackle the supply of Class A drugs in Northamptonshire and is currently conducting 31 separate investigations.
Northamptonshire Police have been focusing on organised drug crime, like gangs, local drug lines and county lines where drug gangs in cities operate in smaller towns using dedicated mobile phone lines.
The operation has resulted in the arrest of 105 people aged between 15-55, 87 of these individuals have been charged with conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and 62 of them have been remanded in custody.
Of the 105 arrested, 72 were from Northamptonshire, 25 were from London and eight were from the West Midlands.
The operation has also recovered £25,000 worth of Class A drugs, designer goods worth more than £150,000 and £20,000 in cash. Police also recovered a Mercedes CLA Sport worth more than £35,000.
Superintendent Chris Hillery said: "The success of Operation Redwood makes me very proud to work for Northamptonshire Police - a force absolutely committed to tackling the supply of Class A drugs in our county.
"Through this operation, we have disrupted a huge number of drugs lines as well as arresting and charging a number of individuals we believe to be involved.
"Our aim of course is to dismantle all of the drugs lines in Northamptonshire and though we have seen some great results so far, Operation Viper is very much a live operation and our teams continue to work hard as part of it."
Operation Viper has resulted in 70 warrants being executed in Northamptonshire, Wolverhampton, Birmingham and London.
Northamptonshire Police's drugs operation is also focusing on safeguarding vulnerable people who are exploited by drugs lines and criminal gangs, including children being used to deal drugs.
Superintendent Hillery said: "A lot of people don’t realise that those at the top of drugs gangs and drugs lines rarely take any of the risks.
"Instead they use other people, including young children, exploiting them and putting them in danger in order to reap the rewards.
"We want to safeguard as many of these people as possible – many of them are children but a lot of them are also vulnerable adults, and Operation Viper is committed to getting them the support they need to break away from those who seek to control them.”
There is also a programme to help those who want to break out from criminality and turn their back on offending.
Superintendent Hillery said the aim was to make Northamptonshire a safer place to live.
"It is also about making it absolutely clear that we have a zero-tolerance approach to drugs in this county and that those who think that dealing them is acceptable will be brought to justice, regardless of whether they remain in Northamptonshire or not.
"The people we have arrested and charged so far didn’t think their criminality would catch up with them so my message to those drug dealers we haven’t caught yet is simple – we are coming for you."