05 AUG 2018

Police cracking down on drug dealing in Dover

Police tell me they are cracking down on 'county lines' drug dealing in Dover, following reports criminal gangs have been trying to recruit schoolchildren. Chief Superintendent Tom Richards and I met to discuss the issue, after I told him how local secondary school headteachers and parents had contacted me raising concerns.

Residents in Dover and Deal say some pupils are being targeted by gang members from London – who try to recruit local children to deal drugs in the area. It follows reports of students at secondary schools in Thanet also being approached. Ch Supt Richards assured met police were taking firm action on county lines, gangs and drug dealing.

And this week Chief Inspector Mark Weller, Dover District Commander, told me he was pleased to report a number of individuals engaged in such activity have been arrested, charged and now removed from the Dover area.

Reports that London gang members are coming to our area to recruit local teenagers are deeply concerning. We must fight back and stop our young people being lured into the dark world of drugs and crime. It's welcome that some of these individuals have been charged and removed from Dover and Deal. Our local Chief Inspector Mark Weller and his team deserve great credit for taking action. Yet we must all remain vigilant.

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Charlie Elphicke

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