England

'County lines' arrests over drug supplies in Kent and London

Knives Image copyright Alamy
Image caption Knives, cash and packets of suspected crack cocaine and heroin was seized during the raids

Nineteen people suspected of supplying drugs have been arrested as part of a "county lines" police investigation.

Properties were searched in Chatham in Kent and Brixton, Charlton, Lambeth, Eltham and Enfield in London.

One woman and 18 men have been arrested on suspicion of conspiring to sell class A drugs, police said.

"County lines" refers to criminals in urban centres expanding their activities into smaller towns and rural areas.

Kent Police officers seized knives, cash and packets suspected of containing crack cocaine and heroin in the raids carried out between Tuesday and Thursday, a spokesman said.

Supt Tracey Quiller said: "The enforcement action carried out this week shows that we will not hesitate to cross county boundaries to target those suspected of bringing criminality into Kent.

"We are dedicated to removing county line networks in order to prevent the exploitation of vulnerable people and the significant harm these offences cause to our communities."

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