Suspected drug dealers have been arrested after officers waded into the River Stour as part of their efforts to keep Canterbury safe.

Following a report that a property in the Whitstable Road area of the city was being used as a base for drug dealing, officers from Kent Police’s County Lines and Gangs Team carried out a warrant  and arrested two men. Two people were offered safeguarding against being cuckooed.

Followed into water

Enquiries led officers to stop a suspected drug dealer in Westgate Gardens on Thursday 23 June 2022. As officers approached, the man started to run away and he entered the River Stour.  Police followed him into the water and were able to detain him shortly after. 

A 25-year-old man from Romford, east London was arrested on suspicion of possessing drugs with intent to supply and taken into custody.

Officers then carried out a patrol near the property in the early hours of Friday 24 June, resulting in the arrest of a 20-year-old man from London on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of drugs. Three mobile phones and a large quantity of cash were seized at the scene.

Two men have since been released without charge and two other men remain in custody while enquiries continue to secure the property from illegal activity.

Detective Sergeant Robert Goodban from Kent Police’s County Lines and Gangs Team, said: ‘County lines offenders remain highly adaptable in their operating methods and practices, including in the recruitment and exploitation of vulnerable people. They seek to target vulnerable people, taking over their homes and ‘cuckooing’ them. Kent Police is committed to the protection of vulnerable adults.

‘We ask residents to remain vigilant and if people see something suspicious and believe there is drug criminality going on in their community, report it to Kent Police on 999 or 101 so officers can investigate and take action.

‘The information provided to officers may be the missing piece needed to identify dealers and disrupt their illegal activity.’

By Ed

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