Eight people have today (Wednesday) been arrested in a series of dawn raids to crackdown on the supply of crack cocaine and heroin.
A quantity of drugs, paraphernalia, large quantities of cash and a shotgun were also seized as officers carried out targeted strikes at 12 addresses across North Shields and Blyth this morning.
The dawn raids were carried out alongside the National Crime Agency (NCA), the North East Regional Special Operations Unit (NERSOU) and other partner agencies as part of an investigation into the large-scale supply and distribution of Class A drugs across the region.
Two women, aged 21 and 36, and six men, aged 49, 39, 39, 38 and 30, were arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs. A 50-year-old man was also arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to supply Class A.
Detective Chief Inspector Jonathan Bensley, from Northumbria Police, said the strikes highlighted the Force’s ongoing commitment to tackling serious and organised crime under the banner of Operation Sentinel.
He said: “Our officers work hard to make sure our communities are safer and to prevent harmful substances like these being sold on our street corners.
“We know that people’s lives can be destroyed from drug use and it our duty to pursue those offenders who have a role in supplying, distributing and dealing these awful substances.
“As part of Operation Sentinel, our joined up approach to tackling serious and organised crime, we will continue to carry out strike action, searches and seizing items to disrupt and prevent offenders continuing their illicit activities.
“I would like to thank all the Neighbourhood teams from across Northumberland and Tyneside for coming together today as well as our partners from NERSOU and the local authority.”
Anyone with information about drug dealing in their community should call police on 101, report online at the Northumbria Police website or contact independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.