Two men were arrested following dawn raids as part of a new crackdown on drugs and associated violence in the capital on Wednesday, 25 May.
Building on the success of Met’s county lines response, the new pilot is focused on smashing intra-London class A drug lines.
Policing Minister Kit Malthouse joined the Met’s lead for County Lines, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Graham McNulty and specialist officers on the early morning operation in east London.
Drug dealers exploit vulnerable people and cause wider violence across London. Since Operation Orochi – the name given to the Met’s County Lines initiative – more than 800 county lines have been shut down and almost 1,000 arrests have been made. The latest pilot, Operation Yamata, is funded by the Home Office with the aim of reducing serious drug-supply and associated violence which creates misery for London’s communities.
The operation was launched just a month ago and has already led to more than 100 class A intra-London county lines being identified.
Two men aged in their 20’s were arrested for being concerned in the supply of class A drugs, they remain in police custody. At the property several mobile phones and £4,500 in cash was seized.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Graham McNulty, who attended this morning’s raid, said: “Drugs inflict untold damage on the most vulnerable people in our society and plague communities. We saw the great success of Op Orochi and have worked to replicate this model to tackle London lines.
“It is early days for Op Yamata but we have already arrested eight people, charged six and taken out six lines. We are working hard to dismantle these drug lines we have identified and won’t stop until we have dealt with every single one.
“My message to London line holders and drug dealers is clear, we are coming for you. It is only a matter of time until we are at your door in the early hours so stop now.
“Tackling violence is our top priority and following the pilot we hope to extend the operation in our commitment to keep London safe.”
“The Met has also been working closely with partners to also address the demand for drugs. This has included supporting those individuals suffering from addiction through programmes such as Project Adder. It is only by focusing simultaneously on both the demand and supply of drugs, that we can make a real difference”.
Police, Crime and Probation Minister Kit Malthouse said: “Drug gangs have too much of London in their sights, with violence and misery their calling cards.
“The Met Police are confronting them and their malevolent trade vigorously and, most importantly, rescuing hundreds of kids from their dreadful clutches.
“They have arrested over 7,400 and closed down more than 1,500 county lines. Slowly but surely the gangs are in retreat and we will do everything we can to support that work.”
Op Yamata brings together the skills and experience of Specialist Crime officers with the knowledge and expertise of local officers. It reshapes the approach to tackling gang and drug-related violence by working to identify and attribute active London drugs line through communications data and engagement with users, resulting in swift enforcement activity.
Op Orochi began a new tactic of targeting the ‘line holder.’ The team work hand in glove with other police forces, working together to evidence the line holder’s involvement and then carrying out joint enforcement activity.
The Op Orochi methodology has achieved 90% arrest/charge ratios, 85% early guilty plea rates, and 95% conviction rates. Two thirds of Orochi drug suppliers have been previously linked to violence offences demonstrating the undeniable link between drug supply and violence. One of the key successes of the Orochi methodology is its ability to close drugs lines at scale and reduce the harm caused by drug supply networks.