Police in Eastbourne have cracked down on drug-related issues in the Langney area of the town during a dedicated week of action.
Between August 11 and 16, police ran Operation Delivery – a week-long initiative working with partners to reduce drug dealing and drug-related harm through increased patrols and engagement.
PC Peter Clarke hosted a community meeting at Langney Community Centre, where 43 local residents came along to hear about the proactive work being done in their community.
During the week of action, officers noted a significant increase in the amount of intelligence received from the public.
Police also conducted 25 stop searches and made a number of arrests for offences including possession with intent to supply drugs, drug driving, obstructing a police officer and theft.
Intelligence and public reporting is key and helps officers identify and tackle county lines, where organised criminal groups use phone lines to move and supply drugs, usually from cities into smaller towns and rural areas.
They often exploit vulnerable people, including children and those with mental health or addiction issues, by recruiting them to distribute the drugs, known as drug running.
They may also deal from the homes of vulnerable people, a practice known as cuckooing.
Working alongside housing officers from Eastbourne Borough Council, joint cuckooing visits were conducted at 15 addresses.
There are several signs to look out for that may indicate someone is a victim of cuckooing:
- frequent visitors at unsociable hours
- changes in your neighbour’s daily routine
- unusual smells coming from a property
- suspicious or unfamiliar vehicles outside an address
Members of the public are urged to contact police to report drug-related offences or drug-related harm in their communities.
If you’re concerned about drug-related crime in your area or think someone may be a victim of drug exploitation, please call us on 101.
If it’s an emergency, please call 999. If you’re deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service 18000. Or text us on 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergencySMS service.
If you’re in danger but you can’t talk on the phone, you should still call 999, then follow these instructions depending on whether you’re calling from a mobile or a landline.
You can also report it online, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information cannot be traced or recorded and you will not go to court or have to speak to police when contacting Crimestoppers.
Further information and support
- The National Crime Agency County Lines website explains more about county lines and indicators of exploitation in your area.
- Safe 4 Me has details about support services nationally for young people impacted by Child Criminal and Sexual Exploitation. They also have lots of information regarding specific forms of exploitation, understanding trauma, rights and the law and much more.
- The Safeguarding Network have helpful tips for understanding indicators of exploitation and what may make a young person more vulnerable to being exploited.
The NSPCC Net-Aware website offers guidance on understanding specific apps and platforms that young people may be using.