AN OPERATION to target criminals exploiting major road and rail networks to commit serious and acquisitive crime resulted in 68 arrests between the 10 – 12 October.
During the operation, nine police forces worked together to share intelligence and co-ordinate resources to pursue high harm criminals and disrupt organised crime groups operating across borders.
Officers from Surrey, Sussex, Thames Valley, the Met, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Warwickshire, Northamptonshire and the British Transport Police participated in the operation.
This included the deployment of specialist units such as intelligence, covert, police dogs and the National Police Air Service, who worked together with officers on the ground to pursue criminals travelling between counties to commit serious crime.
The operation also resulted in:
- 26 weapons being seized;
- Over £9,000 in cash being seized;
- 51 vehicles being seized;
- 66 instances in which drugs being seized.
Criminals suspected of operating county line networks, carrying out organised burglaries and thefts of high value cars were among some of those who found themselves in handcuffs last week.
Detective Inspector James Ansell, who co-ordinated the operation, said: “Whilst we work across borders and share intelligence with neighbouring forces all year-round, this operation was an intensive effort to pursue some of the south-east’s most dangerous criminals.
“Organised crime groups exploit the most vulnerable and bring violence and misery to our communities, which is why putting a stop to serious and acquisitive crime is a priority we all share.
“Our work does not stop here, and criminals should know that we will relentlessly pursue them until they are brought to justice and our communities are safeguarded from their deplorable crimes.”
Surrey’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner, Ellie Vesey-Thompson, joined officers on patrol in the north of the county on Wednesday night.
She said: “During the evening, I had the opportunity to see first-hand the incredible work officers do to tackle serious criminality, both in Surrey and further afield.
“This teamwork approach with other forces around the country allows our offices to disrupt the cross-border criminal activity that does so much harm to vulnerable victims.
“Coordinating our resources and sharing intelligence further equips Surrey Police to tackle a huge range of offences, including county lines drug dealing, violence against women and girls, and burglary.
“Making sure residents here in Surrey not only are safe, but feel safe too, is a key priority for the Commissioner and I, and proactive operations like this are key in helping to achieve that goal.”