A house used by a county lines criminals where more than £9,000 worth of drugs were seized during a recent warrant has been closed for three months.
A closure order application was granted at North Somerset Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (29 July) for the property in Tanning Drive, Highbridge.
Evidence compiled for the application included:
- £9,000 worth of drugs, 15 mobile phones and weapons seized during a recent warrant under the Misuse of Drugs Act – including a hunting knife and a suspected imitation firearm
- Disturbances in the street outside the property, including a vehicle being damaged by offenders with a baseball bat
- A serious assault at the property and further disturbances/arguments within the property and communal areas
- People coming out of the house under the influence of drugs and paraphernalia found within the property
Ch Insp Justin French said: “County lines drug dealing is a scourge affecting our communities and we want to reassure the public that despite these unprecedented times, tackling and dismantling county lines networks remains one of our top priorities. We want to disrupt these ruthless gangs who will stop at nothing to exploit the most vulnerable for their own benefit.
“We rely on local residents providing us with information and I’d encourage anyone with concerns about crime or anti-social behaviour within their community to contact their local neighbourhood team. The more evidence we can gather in these and similar situations, the stronger the case we can present at court. I’d like to thank all the residents who put their faith and trust in us and I hope this outcome shows we take your concerns seriously.”
Anti-Social Behaviour Manager Cerwyn Pritchard, who led on the closure order application, added: “This order sends a clear message that drug misuse and anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated by Avon and Somerset Police and together we can deal with these offences using all the legal powers available to us.
“The conduct of those living at the property and visitors to the address has had a detrimental effect on the health and wellbeing of their neighbours, to the point where some felt afraid to continue living a normal life.”
Laura Smith, Enforcement Manager at LiveWest, which owns the property, said: “As a social landlord rooted in our communities, we support all of our residents and action like this is very much a last resort for us.
“We do not tolerate anti-social behaviour and, as a result of a fantastic partnership with the police, we are successfully tackling county lines in the area.
“We urge all of our residents to keep helping us to tackle anti-social behaviour and drug use and we’ll continue to work closely with partner agencies to achieve positive outcomes to ensure all our communities remain safe places to live.”