Ten arrests were made as part an operation targeting cross-border criminality led by the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate and Tactical Operations team.

Officers used a range of tactics to detect and stop vehicles linked to offences committed in the county including burglaries, thefts of high value vehicles, motoring offences and domestic abuse.

Shortly after midnight on Wednesday 23 November 2023 a car reported stolen from the London borough of Bromley was stopped in Swanley following a pursuit with five teenage males inside. The same vehicle had also been linked to an attempted theft of a Land Rover Discovery from an address in Snodland the previous day.

All five males, from London and aged between 15 and 18, were arrested and released on bail pending further enquiries.

Later on 23 November a vehicle was watched by officers, in an unmarked police car, being driven away from a petrol station at speed on Thames Road, Dartford. After stopping a short distance away, two men attempted to flee on foot but were caught and arrested.

The vehicle was later found to be on false registration plates and had numerous items of meat and alcohol inside that are believed to have been stolen. A hunting knife was also located.

Both men, one aged 30 and the other 27, were arrested for offences including theft and possession of a bladed item and released on bail pending further enquiries.

The operation ran for three days from Tuesday 22 November and also resulted in a 23-year-old man being arrested in Dartford for breaching a domestic abuse order and possession of cannabis, a 27-year-old woman being arrested in Swanley on suspicion of drug-driving, and a 37-year-old man being arrested in Dartford for multiple offences including theft of a motor vehicle, dangerous driving and assaulting a police officer.

Police also issued seven traffic offence reports, recovered one stolen vehicle and seized an abandoned car that had previously been driven in a suspicious manner near a farm in the Gravesham area.

Detective Chief Inspector Patrick Milford of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said:

‘Burglars, thieves and other criminals do not recognise county boundaries or care which force is responsible for policing a particular area. All they think about is making money from and taking possessions that do not belong to them.

‘It is therefore very important we know who is travelling in and out of Kent with the intention of committing crime, and that we work with neighbouring forces to take action against them.

‘This was a successful operation that resulted in a number of arrests, but equally as important was the amount of information we were able to obtain into a number of ongoing investigations relating to serious and organised criminality. This work will continue in the interests of everyone who lives and works in Kent.’

By Ed

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