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Drug seizures worth almost £3m and jail terms of 257 - what a year it's been for Operation Sentinel
04 Feb | 14:48
2️⃣5️⃣7️⃣ years behind bars
❗️£2.7 million worth of drugs seized
3️⃣2️⃣ convictions
1️⃣8️⃣ firearms confiscated
 
What a year it’s been for our dedicated detectives working hard to tackle serious and organised crime as Operation Sentinel marks its first year.
 
So far our targeted crackdown has seen officers seize more than 5️⃣5️⃣kg of drugs with an estimated street value of £2,711,000 and put some of the most dangerous offenders behind bars for a combined total of 257 years.
 
And the fight doesn’t stop there.
 
Detective Chief Superintendent David Felton, the Force’s new head of crime has warned his team is ready to ramp up their action and continue the pursuit of criminals involved in the likes of County Lines drug dealing, human trafficking and fraud.
 
He said: “Make no mistake about it, we’re coming for you.
“People who involve themselves in violent crimes which exploit others are not the people our community should be looking up to – they are dangerous offenders who flout the law for their own gain.
 
“This year we will continue to carry out surveillance on criminal gangs, tracking and monitoring their organisations, the people involved in them and the activities they carry out. There will be nowhere to hide when we come for you.
 
“Since we launched Operation Sentinel, our officers have worked tirelessly to make sure anyone involved in illicit criminal activity is brought before the courts. Their achievements in the past year have been no mean feat and I would like to say a massive thank you to all of them for their hard work.”
 
Operation Sentinel is our joined up initiative where we work alongside Durham, Cleveland and the North East Regional Special Operations Unit (NERSOU) to pursue criminals involved in serious and organised crime and protect our communities from their illicit activities.
 
Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Kim McGuinness, said: “The results speak for themselves – the hard work and joint approach pays off and we need to keep it up. The message is clear - those responsible for serious crimes will be caught and robust action will be taken.
 
“It’s crucial for our police to have the resource they need to clamp down on these offenders and I am fully committed to this area of work. It’s not just about keeping up with the criminals – it’s about getting ahead of them. I look forward to seeing the operation continue to grow.”
 
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We seized a total of 12.65kg of cocaine, 9.36kg heroin, 17.16kg amphetamines and 15.51kg cannabis – 18 firearms and 114 rounds of ammunition.
 
They have carried out 238 disruption events, resulting in 269 arrests, 39 charges and 32 convictions with dangerous individuals being put behind bars for more than 257 years.
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