28 arrests and £12,000 of drugs seized in Chelmsford as Operation Raptor police crackdown on gangs

Police are appealing for witnesses following an incident involving a stolen van in Clacton today. Pi

Police are appealing for witnesses following an incident involving a stolen van in Clacton today. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN/STOCK IMAGE - Credit: Archant

A crackdown on targeting gang-related crime in Chelmsford, has seen 28 people arrested and around £12,000 worth of drugs seized in recent weeks.

Since the end of June, Essex Police’s North Operation Raptor team has been focusing its efforts in the city following some violent incidents linked to drug dealing gangs across the city.

To target those responsible the team have been increasing their activity, using intelligence to target their patrols, executing warrants and arresting those linked to drug supply.

They have been supported by locally based officers who have increased their patrols focusing on a number of areas, including the Chelmer Village, Baddow, Springfield, city centre and Sandon areas.

So far as part of the crackdown on gang-related crime officers have arrested 28 people, seized £12,000 worth of Class A and B drugs and seized £5,000 in cash which is believed to be the proceeds of crime.

Arrests have been for a variety of serious offences including possession with intent to supply drugs including heroin, crack cocaine and cannabis, causing grievous bodily harm with intent and possession of a knife.

Of those arrested five people have been charged and are due to appear in court. A number of others have been bailed while investigative work continues.

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Essex Police is also hoping to secure Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) against any of those convicted as part of the crackdown.

The CBOs are an additional tool available to police to prevent those involved in crime committing further offences.

‘If you are involved in drug and gang-related crime you can expect that we will come to arrest you too’

Chelmsford District Commander Chief Inspector Ronnie Egan said: “Regrettably, we have some violent incidents in the City which we believe are as a result of gang-related crime.

“While we understand this will concern our residents, they need to be reassured that we are doing all we can to target this issue and those involved in gang and drug-related crime in our community.

“We are also working with the community safety partnership and the schools with additional intervention and education programmes for young people

“[Our Raptor Team] know the individuals who are supplying drugs in our community, they know where they operate, who they associate with and what vehicles they drive, and they use that information for their targeted patrols and for the execution of warrants.

“If you are involved in drug and gang-related crime you can expect that we will come to arrest you too.”

Detective Sergeant Andy Stott of the North Operation Raptor team said: “We are pleased with the number of arrests we have had so far.

“But we are not complacent, our work is not done and we will continue to target those blighting our communities.

“But everyone has a part to play in assisting us. If you have information about drug or gang-related crime in your community, we need your information.

“Every bit of information we receive helps us build a picture of who is doing what and where and allows us to target our activity and catch those responsible.”

• If you have information about gang or drug-related crime in your community, contact Essex Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111

The men charged:

• Josh Davis, 19, of Bourne Avenue, Basildon was charged with possessing a Class A drug with intent to supply, possessing a Class B drug with intent to supply and possessing an offensive weapon.

He was remanded in custody and will appear at Chelmsford Crown Court for trial on November 6.

• A 17-year-old from Bishop’s Stortford was charged with possession with intent to supply a Class B drug. He will appear at Chelmsford Youth Court on August 18.

• A 17-year-old boy from Chelmsford was charged with possession with intent to supply a Class B drug. He will appear at Chelmsford Youth Court on August 18.

• Connor Reidy, 19, of Cusak Road, Chelmsford was charged with obstructing a constable and possessing a blade. He will appear at Colchester Magistrates’ Court today (August 8).

• Josh Reid, 18, of Rutland Road, Chelmsford was charged with obstructing a constable and possessing a blade. He will appear at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on August 18

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