Dogs sniffing out drugs in South Yorkshire crackdown

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POLICE dogs were taken into pubs and clubs across Rotherham to sniff out drugs - in the latest crackdown in the town.

The searches took place in Maltby, Wickersley and Rotherham town centre, after reports of increased anti-social behaviour and violence linked to drug use in the town.

Police officers took to the streets and entered pubs and clubs with Special Constables, drug advisors and Police Community Support Officers.

The team targeted licensed premises and drug hotspots.

Chief Inspector Ian Womersley said: “We have seen an increase in anti-social behaviour connected to drugs use in and around Rotherham.

“An effective way to identify those carrying drugs is by use of a passive drugs dog. The dog is skillfully trained to find illegal drugs, whether it’s a large amount or residue.

“Wherever users hide drugs these amazing dogs will find them. The dogs have absolutely no interest in drugs and what they are actually looking for is their favourite toy.

“The dogs are trained to perform regardless of distractions.

“We have a number of such operations planned over the coming months in many different parts of Rotherham to ensure Rotherham is a safer place to live, work and visit.”

South Yorkshire Police said eight people were found carrying drugs and offenders were spoken to by drug workers about the consequences and side effects of taking illegal substances.

Chief Insp Womersley added: “The operation found eight people in possession of illegal drugs, which was well received by licensees and the public, and sends a very clear message out that if you use illegal drugs, the police will identify you and deal with you very firmly.”

■ Anyone with information about those involved with drugs should call 101.