Knowsley dawn drug raids net 21 arrests
A series of dawn drugs raids on homes in Merseyside has resulted in 21 arrests.
Merseyside Police said the operation was the culmination of a 12-month investigation into the supply of heroin and other Class A drugs in Knowsley.
Searches were made of 20 addresses in Stockbridge Village, Dovecot, Croxteth, Anfield and Kensington.
Police are questioning 17 men and four women and have offered them addiction counselling by charity, Addaction.
Officers said they hoped that offering treatment would help drug users and dealers find "a way out of the vicious circle they have found themselves in".
Twenty of those arrested have been held on suspicion of conspiracy to supply class A drugs while one woman has been arrested on suspicion of money laundering.
A cannabis farm was also discovered at one of the properties.
Ch Supt Darren Martland, said: "This operation is not just about locking people up.
"Treatment and education, working alongside enforcement, will be essential components of a long-term solution to breaking the cycle of drugs misuse and criminal behaviour."
Jon Brown, project manager at Addaction, added: "With the right support people can and do recover from drug problems.
"That's why Addaction are providing important, follow-up support to anyone affected by this operation."