Drugs and drug related crime can have a negative impact on our communities and its use can harm the health and safety of our residents. Our officers are committed to tackling drug related issues within Cambridgeshire and we welcome any information you may have about drug use or dealing.
To help keep our communities safe, we encourage you to look out for common signs of drug dealing and let us know if you see anything suspicious.
Spot the signs
Would you recognise if drug dealing was happening where you live or work in Cambridgeshire? Would you know if someone was being used as a drugs mule by a drug gang? It's important to spot the signs of drug activity and please report information about crime online so that we can prevent vulnerable people falling victim to this crime.
Drug networking, also known as county lines, involves organised crime groups extending their drug dealing business from big cities into new areas.
These groups often use a phone number, known as a 'drugs line', to contact their customers and sell class A drugs.
Drug dealing groups often use young people to deliver their drugs, by paying them or by forcing them through violence and grooming.
These young people, known as 'runners', are usually male and aged between 12 and 20. The young people travel between cities and other areas to deliver drugs and collect cash on behalf of the dealers.
Forced drug transporting
In most cases, those delivering drugs across the country are being forced to do so by the dealer. Members of organised crime groups target vulnerable people to handle drugs for them, to take away the risk of getting caught with drugs themselves. The targeted vulnerable drug transporters are often;
children in care
children absent from school
children missing from home
single parents on low incomes.
The organised crime groups are known to use violence and manipulation against these vulnerable people. Human trafficking forms another part of this type of crime as dealers often force young and vulnerable people into storing and supplying drugs.
They are also usually forced to swallow drugs in order to avoid police finding them.
Suspected drug dealing from a house
Have you noticed more people living at an address of a vulnerable person? Drug dealers often take over the home, make them sell drugs and use the home as a place for others to take drugs. Unusual activity could include;
lots of different people coming and going from an address
people coming and going at odd times of the day and night
strange smells coming from the property
windows covered or curtains closed all the time
cars pulling up to or near the house for a short period of time
Another way professional criminals deal drugs in particular neighbourhoods, known as 'cuckooing'. Cuckooing involves offenders targeting the homes of vulnerable people and using it to deal drugs.
Those who usually become vulnerable to cuckooing are lonely, isolated and drug users themselves. In fact, dealers usually offer them free drugs as a way of getting into the victims home. The property is then used to deal and manufacture drugs for a short period of time before the dealer moves onto somewhere new.
Handling mobile phones or lots of cash
You may not see drug runners with any drugs but you may see the signs of drug dealing such as large amounts of cash or lots of mobile phones - usually cheap pay-as-you-go types.
The signs of a runner or drug dealer can include;
someone having more cash, clothing or phones than normal
talk of gang names in the area
someone using nicknames when speaking about others.
These signs are often a good indicator that someone is involved in county lines drug crime.
Drug packing materials
Vaseline, cling film and baby wipes are regularly used when storing drugs in body cavities. There is a big health risk to anyone storing drugs in their body.
Report drug activity in your area
We all have a role to play in keeping our local areas safe from drug dealing. Below are some questions that might help you identify strange activities where you live or work, that might be related to drugs:
have you seen something you think could be drug related?
do you know someone who is being forced or asked to deal drugs?
do you know someone who has a drugs debt?
do you suspect someone is dealing drugs?
have you seen a vehicle you think is transporting drugs?
are lots of vehicles visiting a particular house at all times of the day and night?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you can report drugs related crimes to us online or call us on 101. You don't have to tell us your name, just what you know or have seen. Your information could be vital.
If someone is in immediate danger or a crime is taking place you should always call 999.