Belfast Telegraph

Police seize litres of alcohol and 200 prescription tablets in haul from Northern Ireland teens as young as 13

By Claire Williamson

Police have seized a haul of drugs and alcohol from teenagers as young as 13 in Northern Ireland.

Around 250 items were seized in the Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon area.

Police also recovered 200 prescription pills as well as Class A, B and C drugs.

They were seized by officers on Friday and police said they spoke to more than 230 young people who were aged between 13 and 16.

The haul included 74 litres of cider and 18 litres of vodka among other alcohol.

Chief Inspector Jon Burrows said: "I would appeal to all parents and guardians as we approach the school holidays to know where your children are, check and double check and talk to them about the dangers of alcohol and drugs."

Mr Burrows said officers searched in "out of view places" and found children there with "bongs and other paraphernalia for consuming drugs".

He said: "A common theme emerged that children were drinking alcohol earlier in the day so they would sober up by the time they got home to their parents or guardians.

"Another more familiar story was retold time and time again, parents thought their children where one place only for us to find them somewhere else.

"Yesterday we referred many children and parents to social services, referred others to the Alcohol Support Programme and took several children home to their parents.

"The follow up work with our partners will hopefully safeguard the children going forward and support their parents. Police officers all too often see the tragic impact of underage drinking and drug taking, the harm and suffering caused to families and communities. "

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