In Brent officers visited 40 pawnbrokers and jewellers shops over the two days. They issued the shops with ultra violet lights and posters promoting identifying potential stolen property that may be subject to SmartWater. Two drugs search warrants were executed at licensed premises. One at West Coast bar, resulting in three arrests for possession with intent to supply cannabis and another at a premises in Neasden Circle which was negative. 13 other premises were visited by police cadets in relation to the sale of alcohol to under age people. Two failed and sold to cadets under the legal age and were issued with fines and warned over licence breaches. Five registered sex outlets were visited and all were found to be complying with the condition of their licences. The operation, in conjunction with UKBA, also visited five Brazilian restaurants in response to intelligence about immigration matters. All the restaurants were found to be operating correctly.
A firearms automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) operation targeting gang nominals took place in the south of the borough, which resulted in 36 stops of identified vehicles. These stops led to nine arrests for a variety of offences including drugs, firearms offences (CS gas) and offensive weapons in form of knives. One individual who was arrested for drugs was also wanted for a violent assault. Officers carried out a covert operation at Wembley Arena to patrol crowds and spot potential thieves stealing mobile phones. Six phones were reported lost or stolen. During the same operation last year 100 phones were reported lost or stolen.
Officers worked with the local authority Trading Standards and licensing officers to visit numerous premises across the borough in response to information and intelligence received form members of the public. Out of the 25 licensed bars and public houses visited 15 tested positive for drugs swab in toilets, which would suggest drugs were being taken or sold on those premises. Advice was given to managers at all venues. It is a shocking statistic that more than half the venues visited had at some point had drug usage taking place on the premises. Officers made three arrests for drugs and public order during visits.
Safer Neighbourhoods Chief Inspector Sean Lynch said: “I am very pleased with the excellent results from Brent Borough. Licensing impacts upon everyday community life and licensing laws are there for good reason to protect the community from danger. We will continue to commit resources by visiting newsagents, off-licences, public houses, supermarkets and betting shops to ensure and test licensing laws are being followed correctly and we will work with our partners to tackle unlicensed activity to prevent crime and anti social behaviour on our streets.”
Cllr. Lincoln Beswick, MBE, Brent’s Lead Member for Crime and Public Safety said: “This is another brilliant example of how Brent’s Drugs and Alcohol Team and Brent Police are working really hard to tackle the problem of unlicensed activity in the borough and sends a strong message to people operating these sorts of premises that they will be caught and severely punished.”
There are many support agencies that are available to offer help and guidance related to drug usage that are based both locally and nationally. CRI (Crime reduction initiatives) is an outreach service that offers advice, support and information working through NHS Brent and are a local based agency.
Katie, the project manager at CRI said: “CRI provides a free and confidential service for people in Brent who have substance misuse issues. We offer information, advice and support, as well as treatment and access to residential rehabilitation. We also support people to access a range of other agencies that can assist them on their journey of recovery.”
There is a 24hr Drugs Helpline that is free to call and will guide and assist you in accessing other services that may be able to meet your need.
Brent police together with partnership agencies would like to see those most vulnerable and in need get the help they require and work their way off drugs and back into society and to ensure that the community becomes a safer environment for all to be a part of, away from drugs and the associated crime that it evokes. If you know someone close to you or you yourself are taking drugs, please contact the help available and they will provide you with the help and support needed to lead a drug free life.
CRI Brent outreach & structured support service. Tel: 020 8955 9710
Narcotics Anonymous. Tel: 0300 999 1212
24-Hour Drugs Helpline. Tel: 0800 107 1754
NHS Direct. Tel: 0854 4647.