|Major Dawn Raids Net Roehampton Drugs Gang|
400 Policemen Involved; 15 Arrested And Drugs Seized
Following a series of raids in the early hours of yesterday morning, over a dozen youths have been arrested for major drug offences. Hundreds of officers took part in raids on the Roehampton Estate in Wandsworth, and those arrested are believed by police to have been part of a gang working in the area. The raids form part of the Met's attempted crackdown on gang crime in London.
Thirteen males and two females aged 18 to 29 have been arrested for conspiracy to supply Class A drugs. They have all been taken to a central London police station where they remain in custody. Officers also seized a quantity of drugs including heroin and cannabis following searches of the addresses.
The arrrests and drug seizures came after a major police operation, in which twenty-one search warrants were executed simultaneously at 4.30am at a number of addresse.
DCI Tim Champion, from Trident Gang Crime Command called yesterday's operation a "culmination of activity against a violent gang, achieved through joint working between Trident and Wandsworth borough" and said that by working together with London boroughs in this way, Trident aims to "prioritise, tackle, arrest and place before the courts" those guilty of gang crimes. "If you remain in a gang and if you continue to commit crime," claimed DCI Champion, "then we will keep targeting you."
Detective Superintendent Penny Banham from Wandsworth Borough stressed that those caught up in local gangs are given the choice of adopting alternative lifestyles. She said that Wandsworth is a "progressive borough...not just about enforcement," underlining that
Putney and Wandsworth Neighbourhood Policing Team will be working with the Council and other partners to explain what has happened to local residents and businesses, and attempting to reassure the community of Roehampton over the coming days. There will be a mobile police station 11am-5pm in Roehampton today and tomorrow, and a higher police presence is promised in the area for the next few days.