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Two arrested in latest county lines crackdown

26 Nov 2020

We have executed three search warrants this morning (Thursday) in Bedford following reports of drug activity.

As a result, a 29-year-old man and a 19-year-old woman from Bedford have been arrested on suspicion of drugs supply offences and remain in police custody for questioning.

In the past year, the force’s Operation Arrakis has seen the seizure of more than £2,000 in cash, as well as cannabis with a potential street value of up to £22,610, crack cocaine with a potential street value of up to £8,500 and heroin with a potential value of £21,120.

County lines typically involves drugs gangs selling their products in other towns using a dedicated phone line. These gangs are often linked to serious violence and intimidation, grooming and exploiting young people to run drug dealing networks across the country.

Sergeant James West, who led the operation, said: “These operations have seen us recover a significant quantity of drugs, with drugs driving much of the serious violence, exploitation and anti-social behaviour which blights our communities.

“As a team we have carried out significant investigative work to help us identify some key players we believe may be involved in county lines and drug trafficking, and we will continue to disrupt county lines activity in Bedfordshire.

“We know that we face a significant challenge from organised crime in the county – but our communities should be assured that we are on the front foot in driving it down and working towards making our county safer.”

Detective Chief Inspector Louisa Glynn, Bedfordshire Police’s tactical lead for imported county lines, added: “In the last month we have achieved some excellent results in tackling county lines and illicit drug activity in Bedfordshire, as we continue to disrupt the organised criminal networks operating in and around Bedfordshire.

“Drugs supply drives the county lines model of Class A and B dealing, which unfortunately incorporates the use of violence and exploitation of children and other vulnerable people to supply drugs at a local level. Children remain a key component of these business models.

“To help us drive down county lines and exploitation, we need our residents to continue reporting their concerns and suspicions, and together we can help keep Bedfordshire safe.”

Anyone with information about drug dealing, county lines or child criminal exploitation can contact Bedfordshire Police on 101 or via the force’s online reporting centre. 

All of these reports are fed into police intelligence systems and can help officers build up a better picture of organised crime.

You can also report information anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

For more information or support about getting out of a gang, please visit the Bedforshire Violence & Exploitation Unit  website


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