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Drugs worth £1.3m seized in two-month policing blitz

By Deborah McAleese

Illegeal drugs worth £1.35m were seized during a two-month policing operation against street-level dealing, the PSNI has revealed.

The drugs were discovered during 1,166 police searches across Northern Ireland in September and October.

Detective Superintendent Andrea McMullan, from the PSNI's Reactive and Organised Crime Branch, said removing dangerous drugs from the streets is a policing priority.

Over 500 arrests were made in relation to 731 drugs seizures. To date, 44 suspects have been charged and 74 reported to the Public Prosecution Service.

Codenamed Operation Torus, police run the operation twice a year to help remove drugs from the streets.

"Over the past number of years, we have recorded considerable success with Operation Torus and these figures continue this positive trend.

"To have taken £1.35m worth of drugs off the streets is further evidence of our commitment to acting on information provided by communities to reduce the harm posed by dangerous and illegal drugs," said Ms McMullan.

She added:"A total of 44 people have been charged with drugs offences, 74 have been reported to the PPS and a further 59 have been dealt with by way of discretionary disposal.

"Another 24 were cautioned while a further 81 individuals were dealt with by way of warrants or bailed. This latest phase is further proof that drugs remain a policing priority because of the devastating impact they have on individuals and communities."

Police figures show that over a 12-month period, to the end of November, there were 5,156 drugs seizures across Northern Ireland and 2,938 drugs related arrests.

"The PSNI will continue to disrupt and arrest those involved in the sale and supply of drugs, bring those individuals before the courts and work with communities and partner agencies to reduce the threat of harmful and illegal activity," said Ms McMullan.

"I would continue to ask communities to provide us with information about illegal drugs. If you tell us, we will act on it. That's our commitment.

"If you see or know of anyone who is dealing drugs in your local area, then contact your local police on the non-emergency number 101 or alternatively you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 and pass on any details that you may have."

Belfast Telegraph


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