Dawn raids on suspected drug dealers in Newham and Tower Hamlets

Police are appealing for witnesses

Police are appealing for witnesses - Credit: Archant

Dawn raids saw police swoop on suspected drug dealers as officers in Newham and Tower Hamlets shut down a crack house, a cannabis farm, and arrested suspects across the two boroughs.

The Met Police initiative, codenamed Operation Hawk, was part of a capital-wide clampdown on drug crime and hundreds of Safer Neighbourhood Team officers were deployed in all 32 London boroughs.

In Newham, a police spokeswoman said officers closed down a “crack house” and added 17 warrants were issued, nine suspects were arrested for various drugs offences, and about £2,000 was seized because officers suspected the cash was part of the proceeds of crime.

In neighbouring borough Tower Hamlets, 14 warrants were executed, with 11 arrests made. More than £4,000 cash was seized and a cannabis factory was shut down.

Tower Hamlets borough commander, Ch Supt Dave Stringer, said; “It is always gratifying when our research pays off and we recover stolen property, proceeds of crime or drugs.

“It shows we are doing our job in cracking down on crime.”

The operation took place on March 27 and Met Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said: “Officers from across London work daily to tackle the drug dealing that impacts on communities.

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“We have already seen some great success under Operation Hawk and today should warn anyone involved in drug dealing that we will keep making arrests, seizing drugs and closing down cannabis factories.”

The police were keen to point out they rely on information and tip-offs from members of the public about suspected drug dealers, crack dens, and cannabis farms.

Commander Stephen Watson, who led the operation, appealed to residents directly, saying: “With your help, we can make your local community safer, so please make the call and we will make it stop.”

Anyone with information should call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.