Armed officers in dawn drugs raids in two counties

Drugs with a street value of several hundred thousand pounds have been seized in morning raids in Bedford and Northampton, police said.

What is believed to be heroin, cocaine and a cutting agent was found when armed officers carried out the raids.

Nine properties were targeted simultaneously by police using sniffer dogs.

Six men and one woman were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to supply class A drugs.

Officers and PCSOs have been deployed in the areas where the raids were carried out to explain the police activity and provide reassurance to the communities affected.

Det Ch Insp Juliette Beaumont of Bedfordshire Police said: "The operation was in direct response to the community's concerns.

"It was necessary and justified against a backdrop of drug dealing and associated criminality, which included escalating incidents of violence.

"Organised illegal activity will not be tolerated."

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