Seven charged in connection with drugs raid

Northumbria Police has charged seven people in their crackdown on drug supply in Newcastle city centre following a number of early morning raids.

A six month long operation came to fruition on Monday (6/3) morning when specialist officers raided two addresses linked to the supply of 'lethal highs' and other Class A drugs in and around the City Centre.

The raids followed a police operation to identify those involved in the supply of the drugs and gather intelligence about their tactics.

Officers from across the force executed a number of arrest warrants across Newcastle including two addresses in Cowgate and Elswick.

Eight people were arrested as part of a successful operation and now six men and one woman have been charged for conspiracy to supply lethal highs.

The men are aged 55, 50, 44, 25, 22 and 20 and the woman was aged 24. They are all from the Newcastle area and will appear before Newcastle Magistrates Court on April 7. A 36-year-old woman was released on police bail.

Superintendent David Felton, who led the operation for the force's Central Area Command, said the charges showed a commitment to take 'lethal highs' off the streets of Newcastle for good.

He said: "Newcastle is a very safe city and a fantastic place to visit. There has been lots of work done to take lethal highs off the street and many people would have seen the footage we released last year showing the effects these substances have on users.

"Those involved in the supply of these types of drug pray on some of the most vulnerable people in society and this operation is not only about taking those people off the streets but it is about safeguarding vulnerable people.

"Our action won't stop here and we will continue to target those we believe to be bringing illegal substances onto the streets of Newcastle and will do what we can to put them before the court.

"We will continue to work with our partners at the local authority to ensure we remain as one of the most proactive police forces in the country when it comes to taking illegal substances off our streets."

Northumbria Police worked closely with Newcastle City Council as part of the operation and they continue to work together to make Newcastle a safe place to live, work and visit.

Newcastle City Council's Cabinet Member for Neighbouroods and Regulation, Cllr Nick Kemp, said: "I congratulate Northumbria Police on the operation which is the culmination of weeks of dedicated and careful police work.

"Drugs and lethal highs are the scourge of our communities, wrecking families, neighbourhoods and even destroying lives. The council is absolutely committed to helping vulnerable people and will continue to show zero tolerance to those who exploit them."

Anyone who has any information about the supply of lethal highs, or any other type of illegal substance, can contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.