Police swoop on Derbyshire house in gangs crackdown
Police swooped on a house in Derbyshire as part of a national crackdown on gangs. The dawn raid this morning (Tuesday, November 16) took place in Glossop and resulted in a man being arrested. Eight officers assembled outside the property on Hawthorn Drive with a battering ram ready to be used if required, the Manchester Evening News reports.
: Idiot burglars caught calling recovery truck to shift stolen bike Four raids happened early today across the North West under Operation Venetic, a scheme led by the National Crime Agency. More than 40 officers were involved in this morning’s strikes at homes in Hyde, Glossop, and Bacup, involving Derbyshire, Greater Manchester and Lancashire police.
The Serious and Organised Crime Group (SOCG) at Greater Manchester Police has spent the last 18 months investigating a massive amount of data from EncroChat, an encrypted communication service used exclusively by criminals. With around 10,000 users in the UK, the investigation has been a lot of work for the unit to take on, but today marked the 200th arrest made on the back of these messages. Detective Inspector Simon Akker, of GMP, said: “Last year we got data from EncroChat given to us showing communications between people using nicknames.
“That activity is clearly criminal, with people talking about delivering product in these communications, in this case that’s Class A drugs and firearms. “There have been several investigations over the last 12 to 18 months and after today we’ve made 201 arrests as part of Operation Venetic and some of those offenders have been convicted of extremely serious offences including trafficking of drugs, firearms offences, and conspiracy to murder. “It’s taken up a lot of resources for the SOCG but the impact is massive.
“We say massive, but in this case it really is – there’s people that have been arrested who have been otherwise very difficult to investigate so this has opened a can of worms which has been investigational gold. “I’ve been in the police for 25 years and there’s never been an investigation like this.” DI Akker explained that the force can identify the users, who all use nicknames, by researching postcodes, registration plates, and addresses discovered after trawling through all of the user’s messages.
Some of the messages are purely friendly, with criminals arranging light-hearted social meetings alongside their more secretive and serious business arrangements. Since the investigation began, over GBP2.5m in cash, GBP300,000 of assets including luxury jewellery and cars, and more than 1,100 rounds of ammunition have been seized by officers. Police have also been able to take 12kg of Class A and 25kg of Class B drugs – alongside almost a dozen firearms – off the streets, but DI Akker is hoping their work will have an even wider effect.
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Every day we’ll send you our top stories, plus breaking news alerts as they happen, in a completely free email with no ads. To sign up just head to this page and select “Derbyshire Live news” – or enter your email into the black box at the top of this story. He added: “Part of the performance review will look at firearm discharge figures to see if that’s decreasing, the organised crime groups which have been identified and disrupted by the operation, and the amount of drugs on the streets.
“This is a top-down approach really so the investigation we’re conducting today is into some really high level criminals, these aren’t your typical street dealers – but that’s where drugs end up causing misery for thousands of people. “That has an impact on other crimes too, like burglaries and thefts, and also on health and social care so it’s really important.” Of the raids in Glossop, Bacup and Hyde, three men have been arrested for drug and money laundering offences.
A spokesperson for the force said: “Two 31-year-old men and a 44-year-old man were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to supply class A and B drugs, and money laundering. “The 31-year-old suspects are also being held on suspicion of possession of firearms and ammunition. “The 44-year-old is additionally being questioned about conspiracy to possess firearms.
“A 25-year-old woman was later arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply class B drugs. “Search specialists at one of the addresses in Glossop recovered what is believed to be a kilo of amphetamine, which has been taken away for forensic examination.” So far, 155 people have been charged for a range of drug, firearm, and money laundering offences.
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