Drug dealing and associated nuisance and threatening behaviour, which worried residents living in Folkestone sheltered housing, has been brought to an end.

Complaints were made about illegal drug use in the ground-floor flat of a Folkestone & Hythe District Council sheltered housing scheme in Foord Road. 

Neighbouring tenants, some aged in their 80s and 90s, told of a knife being brandished in a corridor, of people climbing in through windows and running through the sheltered scheme, of drug dealing outside a communal door and security cameras being ripped from walls.

Working together Folkestone & Hythe District Council and Kent Police gathered evidence about the activities and used it to apply successfully for a full closure order on the flat.

The 52-year-old tenant who received the closure notice was required to leave his property immediately and is now living outside the Folkestone and Hythe area.

A council spokesperson said: “We did everything we could to support this man’s tenancy but on every occasion he breached the conditions that we had agreed with him.

“The safety and peace of mind of all our residents must be the most important factor and when our efforts to find a solution with this tenant failed then we were left with no option but to pursue the closure order and now he could be at risk of losing his tenancy permanently.

“Activity like this will not be tolerated and we will do the same in the future when this type of behaviour is found.”

The drug-related problems were believed linked to ‘county lines’ activity and Kent Police had previously made arrests at the flat.

Inspector Andy Brittenden from the Folkestone and Hythe Community Safety Unit said: “Officers have been regularly called to the property to tackle issues surrounding antisocial behaviour and drug use. Repeated efforts were made to engage with those at the property yet the behaviour continued.

“Removing people from their home is not a step that is taken lightly, however in this instance residents were having to live with constant disruption and it could not be allowed to continue.

“We will continue to actively work with partners to pursue orders on other properties if they are associated with on-going incidents of anti-social behaviour or drug activity.”

Inspector Andy Brittenden

Anyone affected by similar issues should report them to Kent Police via their website  or by calling 101.

By Ed

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