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Home Breaking Nottinghamshire Police is highlighting its ongoing efforts to put County Lines drug dealers behind bars and raise awareness within our communities

Nottinghamshire Police is highlighting its ongoing efforts to put County Lines drug dealers behind bars and raise awareness within our communities

Bringing offenders to justice and disrupting their operations, as well as educating the public to ‘Look Closer’ to help police identify and support possible victims, are key elements in the force’s approach.

County Lines is where drugs are transported from one area to another, often, although not exclusively, across police and local authority boundaries.

The drugs are usually transported by children or vulnerable people who are coerced into it by gangs. The ‘County Line’ is the mobile phone line used to take order of the drugs.

Detective Chief Inspector Gemma Scott, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “The organised crime gangs who run County Lines exploit children and vulnerable adults to line their own pockets.

“They use debt, violence and threats to carry out their activities and prey upon the most vulnerable people within our communities.”

The force has a dedicated County Lines Team of police constables and detectives, who work closely with the Serious and Organised Crime (SOC) Taskforce and other policing teams.

The team’s work to disrupt County Lines criminals and their operations has seen several notable successes over recent months.

Drug dealer JJ Logan Cross was jailed for nine years last month after a meticulous investigation linked him to a string of organised criminality involving firearms, Class A drugs and money laundering.

The County Lines team and other detectives worked together on separate strands of an investigation to bring the 22-year-old to justice.

The team has also successfully shut down County Lines, including one operating between Nottingham and Lincoln in October after a series of raids.

These are just a few of many successful County Lines operations within the team and across Nottinghamshire Police.

However, officers say they need the public’s help to identify victims and offer them the support they need.

Det Chief Insp Scott said: “The public are an extra set of eyes and ears for us in trying to tackle criminal gangs head-on.

“The information also allows us to engage with the young people, which is hugely important in our battle against County Lines.

“We know young people in the grip of County Lines criminals regularly use trains, buses and taxis to travel from Nottingham to other parts of the country to sell drugs.

“I would urge people to be vigilant. If you feel like there’s something suspicious about another passenger in your carriage, or you’re concerned that a young person is travelling on their own, please contact the police.

“Always report anything suspicious and trust your instincts – it is key to getting that message about County Lines out there.

“Even if someone isn’t involved in County Lines drug dealing, it is possible they are being exploited in some other way, so it’s always worth speaking out.

“You can speak to police by dialling 101, or in an emergency 999. If you would rather remain anonymous, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

“If you notice something linked to the railways, you can report concerns to the British Transport Police by texting 61016 from your mobile.

“If you are a young person who is worried about your involvement, or a friend’s involvement in County Lines a good option is to speak to an adult you trust and talk to them about your concerns. You can also call Childline on 0800 1111.”

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