POLICE officers have issued more than a dozen warrants targeting the supply of class A drugs across County Durham and Darlington.

The operations began on Monday, October 11, and ran until Sunday, October 17, as part of a national effort to clampdown on County Lines.

Over the last seven days, officers have made 11 arrests and seized 2.5kilos of heroin, 18g of crack cocaine, several stolen vehicles, weapons, ammunition, a range of devices and more than £9,000 in cash.

The term ‘County Lines’ refers to a form of criminal exploitation in which criminals groom and manipulate children into drug dealing.

The 'lines' refer to mobile phones that are used to control a young person who is delivering drugs, often to towns outside their home county.

Read more: Spiking: Nightclub boycotts and reports of date rape drug injections

T/Detective Inspector Graham Low, from Durham Constabulary’s Intelligence Unit, said: “This has been a force-wide effort and a lot of work has gone into the preparation of these operations to ensure the successful arrests of those concerned in selling and transporting drugs.

“These operations have allowed us to get criminals off the streets and safeguard some of the most vulnerable people associated with the offenders.”

The week of action also saw a range of partnership work between teams from Intelligence, Safeguarding, CID, Neighbourhoods and Response.

Det Insp Low added: “Safeguarding groups is a vital tool in the fight against county lines and I would encourage members of the public to come forward with information to help people, including children, to be safeguarded.”

If you see something that doesn’t look right or know of any vulnerable people who may be involved in County Lines, please get in touch and help us protect them.

Please call 999 if a person is in immediate danger or if you would prefer to remain anonymous, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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