Police tackle 'County Lines' drug dealing in Sheffield
Police officers in Sheffield have spent a week tackling ‘County Line’s drug dealing in the city as part of a national crackdown.
The week of action across the country was aimed identifying those supplying drugs in the city on behalf of organised gangs.
It was also organised to look for vulnerable people being exploited by the crime gangs, who often use young people to supply drugs to avoid those further up the chain from being caught.
The term ‘County Lines’ is used by police forces to describe organised crime groups who expand their networks by often recruiting young or vulnerable new gang members to move supplies into new areas to make more cash.
South Yorkshire Police has issued a warning of some of the signs to look out for if drug dealing is taking place in a community.
The force said: “Some signs to look out for include an increase in visitors and cars to a house or flat, new faces appearing at the house or flat and new and regularly changing residents.”
It said young people involved may change the way they dress, appear with new expensive possessions and may go missing for periods of time.
They may also miss school or become disengaged.
Young people may also be seen in different cars or taxis driven by unknown adults and they may appear unfamiliar with the community where they are living.
They may also appear with unexplained injuries.
Areas where drug dealing is taking place may experience an increase in anti-social behaviour in the community.
The force is urging anyone with concerns about drug dealing or exploited people to come forward.
It said: “The best advice is to trust your instincts. Even if someone isn't involved in county lines drug dealing, they may be being exploited in some other way, so it's always worth speaking out.”
If you are a young person who is worried about your involvement, or a friend's involvement in county lines good option is to speak to an adult you trust and talk to them about your concerns.
Call South Yorkshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.