Dozens arrested and £185,000 of drugs seized in major crackdown on organised crime in Newcastle

Cannabis and cocaine are among the drugs seized by Northumbria Police
Credit: Northumbria Police

More than £185,000 worth of illegal drugs has been seized and 29 people have been arrested as part of a police crackdown on organised crime in Newcastle.

Officers seized cocaine, ketamine and heroin, as well as taking more than £48,000 in suspected criminal cash out of circulation. 

It is part of Project Adder, which has been running in the city since July and aims to steer people away from offending.

This month Northumbria Police stepped up operations, conducting a number of warrants, searches and tactical vehicle stops.

One house search in Debdon Gardens, Heaton led officers to boxes of cannabis valued at £75,000, another vehicle stop and short foot chase in Jesmond resulted in the seizure of multiple bags of ketamine and cocaine.

Other seizures include deals of crack cocaine, wraps of heroin and quantities of diazepam along with a Rolex and dozens of mobile phones.

As part of the ongoing clampdown, 20 cars were also uplifted and 2,000 packs of suspected illegal cigarettes were recovered.

Cash in a safe
Police seized more than £48,000 in suspected criminal cash as part of Project Adder. Credit: Northumbria Police

Northumbria Police’s lead for Project Adder, Superintendent Jamie Pitt said: “This month we’ve seen a fantastic set of results which will make a real difference in our communities.

“The substances we seize are safely destroyed and never make it onto the streets or turn a profit which could find its way back into organised crime.

“Drug supply exploits the vulnerable and can have a corrosive impact on our neighbourhoods and thanks to Project Adder, a significant quantity of Class A and B drugs have been taken out of the supply chain, and a number of individuals arrested.

“We will continue to work with our partners in both law enforcement and the local authority to tackle serious and organised crime and I hope this activity sends a strong message to those involved in this type of criminality – we will bring you to justice.”

A total of 24 men and five women were arrested on suspicion of drugs offences ranging from possession with intent to supply class A and B to driving while under the influence.

Bags of ketamine and cocaine
Bags of ketamine and cocaine were seized following a tactical vehicle stop in Jesmond. Credit: Northumbria Police

Councillor John-Paul Stephenson, Newcastle City Council cabinet member for Public Health and Culture, said: “Project Adder is about reducing drug-related crime, helping people resolve their substance misuse issues, and improving the support and recovery services available to affected individuals and their families.

“A huge part of that of course is the enforcement activity carried out to prevent these dangerous drugs reaching the streets and disrupt the criminal groups operating in our communities, and Northumbria Police have once again demonstrated their effectiveness in achieving this here.

“While this kind of activity goes a long way to tackling the issues drugs bring, it’s really important that people continue to reach out and get help for themselves and their families and I would urge people to find out about the support and recovery services available in Newcastle on our website.”

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Kim McGuinness, added: “These are big, impressive numbers – the results residents want to see. 

“Drug crime brings so many problems and there really is no quick fix solution but I am very pleased with the work and results that Project Adder is achieving.

“The more people arrested, the more drugs we take out of the circulation, the more people we help with addiction – it’s all part of fighting this crime.”

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