More than 100 people have been arrested during arrest operations in south London targeting people suspected of being involved in drug dealing.
Officers from Specialist Crime executed warrants at a total of 25 addresses in Lambeth and Southwark during early-morning raids on Tuesday, 20 August and Thursday, 22 August.
During the two day operation in Lambeth and Southwark, 23 men and one woman aged between 19 and 41 were arrested on suspicion of drugs offences.
And in a six-week operation across Bromley, Lewisham and Greenwich a total of 86 arrests were made.
In Lambeth and Southwark a quantity of class A and B drugs, including 600 wraps of what officers believe to be cocaine and heroin, and over £10,000 cash was discovered at the addresses by officers and seized.
Nine of those who were arrested have since been charged with drug-related offences.
Det Insp Steve Crockett from Specialist Crime South, who led the operation, said: “Drug supply and the violence that it often causes is rightly a huge concern for communities, and tackling crime and making the streets safer for law-abiding people is a priority across the Met.
“Over just two days, we have visited more than two dozen addresses, taken a number of suspects into custody and seized a large amount of drugs which was destined to be sold on London’s streets to vulnerable people, to generate criminal profits.
“We regularly carry out operations like the one we have run today to make communities safer, and to send a message to people involved in serious criminality that police will continue to pursue and use the full force of the law against them.
“Information from the public remains our most valuable asset and source of intelligence, and we would strongly urge anyone who is aware of crime being committed in their neighbourhoods to call police right away. “We have the resources and the know-how to effectively act on that information, and bring criminals to justice.”
Throughout the summer, officers from across the Met – attached to the Basic Command Units (BCUs) which police local boroughs, as well as specialist units tackling gang violence and organised criminality – have been running proactive operations aimed at tackling and disrupting serious crime and the violence is often leads to.
On Wednesday, 21 August, the final arrest phase of Operation Perseus was completed in south east London. Over six weeks, more than 80 people were arrested. The majority of those have been charged with multiple drug-related offences and appeared in court.
In Bromley, Lewisham and Greenwich a total of 86 arrests have been made during a six-week operation aimed at tackling drug dealing and linked crime.
Known as Operation Perseus, the proactive operation has been running since July 2019 and was launched as a direct response to community concerns about drug dealing, and associated violence and anti-social behaviour.
Nearly 100 warrants under Section 8 of the Police and Crime Act 1984 have been executed at addresses across Greenwich, Lewisham and Bromley by the South East Area proactive policing teams over the summer.
The final arrest phase of the operation – where a number of warrants were executed at addresses in south east London – happened on Wednesday, 21 August. Two men were arrested on suspicion of drugs offences and taken into custody, and a quantity of Class A drugs was seized.
Of those arrested, 81 people have already been charged and many of those have been remanded pending future court appearances.
Det Supt Andy Furphy, of the South East Basic Command Unit (BCU), said: “Operation Perseus began as a direct response to concerns from locals about drug dealers causing misery in the areas they operate. “Following an investigation, we executed a number of warrants. “I hope our efforts demonstrate the Met’s commitment to listening to communities and acting accordingly.
“Whilst the causes of violent crime are complex and wide-ranging, we regularly see drug dealing inextricably linked with a high proportion of violence in London.
“We regularly see young people and the more vulnerable within our communities, targeted and exploited by those who seek to peddle drugs, often instigating violent acts and placing people at risk of harm and criminalisation in the process.
“Across the Met, we are doing this kind of work every day to make the capital a better and safer place and we will continue to prioritise and respond to concerns from communities.”
Communities have a vital role to play in tackling drug dealing and linked criminality, and community intelligence can be used to great effect to not only detect, but prevent crime. Please help us to keep London safe. If you aren’t comfortable speaking directly to the police, please contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111. They do not ask your name or trace your call. You can also contact Crimestoppers online.
Any young people who have information about violence or knife crime, can visit www.fearless.org where they can pass on information anonymously – your IP address will not be traced. Fearless is part of the Crimestoppers charity, and is also independent of the police. (Source: Met Police press releases)