A police officer has been dismissed from Essex Police for gross misconduct after admitting criminal offences.
70+ People Arrested After Drugs Raids In Southend
More than 70 people have been arrested in a police operation targeting drug gangs in Southend.
The arrests were made during two raids in July. The first targeted gangs in the area at the time while the second phase was aimed at preventing other drug dealers moving into the void left afterwards.
Officers say the gangs were using the homes of vulnerable women as the base for supplying local users, forcing them to co-operate through a mixture of fear and threats.
Chief Inspector Simon Anslow, the Southend district commander said: "On July 22 following the success of operation Erasure we saw the potential for new drug dealers moving into the town and trying to get a hold over local people. We moved proactively to focus our activity to prevent this.
"Since July 22 officers working on Op Booth have used disruptive and intrusive engagement tactics to prevent gang members from supplying drugs and moreover to safeguard the vulnerable females being targeted. The Southend Police Tactical Team have been supported by funding and additional policing resources from headquarters so that there is no let-up in our efforts.
"Through intelligence gathering and liaising with partnership agencies locations and activity of gangs dealing class A drugs has been obtained.
"Users were stopped entering or leaving the premises and dealt with positively to ensure they were discouraged from conducting business with the group. Search warrants were executed to catch dealers in possession of the drugs we believe they intended to deal in Southend.
"We are continuing to carry out this excellent work against drug dealers in Southend and we aim to give them no foot-hold and no opportunity to feel comfortable. We want them to jump at every siren and worry that every noise at the door will be the start of a journey that could ultimately see them behind bars.
"Drug use is a problem that goes beyond the sole responsibility of the police to solve; it is society’s problem and solutions can’t be found in enforcement alone. That said. I know that the Police need to be part of a solution, to reduce the impact on communities and minimise the harms caused to everyone involved. Realistically, we won’t be able to prevent every drug deal or stop every drug-related assault in the town, but that won’t stop us trying, so we will continue to work day and night to make Southend safer for everyone.
"If anyone does see drug dealing in progress please call us immediately on 999. If you have less urgent information please call Essex Police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111."
A five-year-old boy has suffered life-threatening injuries when a suspected learner driver crashed into him in Saffron Walden.
A man who set a fire on the ninth floor of a block of flats in Southend, killing a neighbour and her unborn child, has been made subject of a hospital order.
Heart can reveal since so called 'legal highs' were banned last May - Essex Police have made 9 arrests relating to the supply or possession of the drugs.
Recently Played Tracks
Now playing: Non-stop hit music
Now playing: Non-stop hit music
Deposit £10 to get a £40 Welcome Bonus - That's £50 to play bingo, slots and more!*
Over 50 tracks to make you feel-good. New album out now...
Find your local four day weather report here.
What's happening on the roads where you are?
Make Heart the soundtrack to your day and you could be a winner with great prizes up for grabs throughout the day.
Find out more about some of the companies advertising on Heart.
Get some great ideas on how to advertise your business on radio, online and on mobile.