A proactive investigation by Operation Remedy and the Barton Hill neighbourhood team has led to the conviction of several offenders.
Officers investigating drug supply networks intrinsically linked to violent crime, anti-social behaviour and exploiting vulnerable persons in the community made seven arrests during October, resulting in five subsequent convictions:
• Warfa Muse, 19, of no fixed address was convicted of possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin, and sentenced to one year and 8 months imprisonment.
• Nicola Bruni, 45, of no fixed address was convicted of burglary and sentenced to two years and six months imprisonment.
• Abdifatah Osman, 26, of Mallard Close, Speedwell was convicted of possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin, and possession of cannabis, and sentenced to two years and eight months imprisonment.
• Charlene Williams, 36, of no fixed address, was convicted of possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin, and supplying crack cocaine and heroin. She was sentenced to one year and six months imprisonment.
• Emily Wyatt, 41, of no fixed address, was convicted of burglary and sentenced to two years and six months imprisonment.
All were convicted at Bristol Crown Court.
Damien Francis, 41, of no fixed address was also charged with possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin, and possession of a knife. He remains on bail pending trial. A further arrest, of a 27-year-old man, was made for possession with intent to supply cocaine, and possession of a firearm. He has been released under investigation.
In addition to the convictions, the Barton Hill neighbourhood team has secured partial closure orders for the stairwells to three residential buildings where drug related crime and antisocial behaviour are prevalent.
Extended three month closure orders have been secured for two flats in these buildings known to be involved in drug dealing.
Bristol City Council’s Safer Communities and Housing teams followed up on the closure orders obtained by the police, serving possession notices on the addresses to assist the operation against crime and anti-social behaviour in the area.
Civil injunctions have also been secured to prevent vulnerable people from cuckooing in their homes.
Sgt Joanna Babbage said: “We are grateful to those members of the public who have worked closely with us and provided reliable intelligence and statements, which were able to be used in court and played a vital role in securing these convictions and closure orders.
“The Barton Hill neighbourhood team are working hard to prevent issues re-developing and are supporting vulnerable members of the community through local engagement.
“Should you have any concerns about vulnerable members of the community being taken advantage of by criminals, or information around drug dealing in your area, please contact the Police on 101, via the force website, or anonymously by contacting Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”
Councillor Helen Godwin, Bristol’s Cabinet Member for Women, Families and Homes, said: “We are always very concerned by instances of criminal and anti-social behaviour and their impacts on the safety and security of our citizens and tenants.
“These convictions highlight that we take such issues seriously and look to work with tenants, neighbours and agencies such as the police, to resolve them including, when there is a risk to safety, by moving quickly to support action to safeguard the wellbeing of vulnerable residents.
“We are pleased to see that working together in this case has brought positive results and our Moving Forward Together programme, launched last year, continues to demonstrate how we are working with residents to tackle these problems.’’
Operation Remedy is Avon and Somerset Police’s response to tackling drug supply, knife crime and residential burglary.
Further information on the Moving Forward Together programme can be found at https://news.bristol.gov.uk/news/moving-forward-together-the-scheme-that-aims-to-transform-the-lives-of-council-tenants