A HAMPSHIRE estate has been lockdown as a major police drugs bust was launched to disrupt the supply of Class A drugs in the city.
It comes as a team of more than 50 officers were drafted in yesterday to establish a “ring of steel” around the Northam Estate yesterday as specialist units raided three addresses.
Officers in vehicles and on cycles guarded all exits to the estate to ensure no one could get in or out for two hours as units from across the force swooped on the flats.
Five people were arrested as a result of three drugs warrants being executed, all of which were arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class A drugs.
They were a 46-year-old man, a 38-year-old man, a 48-year-old man and a 46-year-old woman, all from Southampton, and a 23-year-old man from Birmingham.
The day of action, which started at 10am, formed part of the Daily Echo-backed Operation Fortress which aims to prevent dealers, described as the “A-list”, from moving in to ply their trade.
Southampton District Chief Inspector Charlie Rimmer said: “This intelligence led operation has been a big success so far. The aim is to work with the community and our partners to make the Northam estate a safe and pleasant place for all.
“The already well established Fortress team have excellent links with local drugs intervention projects which help users get the support they need to turn their lives around.
“We always encourage residents to report concerns relating to drugs use and supply in their neighbourhoods, this type of information allows us to conduct operations such as the one in Northam today. We would like to thank the community for their co-operation and support.”
Following the warrants the Safer Neighbourhoods team carried out patrols in the area to reassure residents and the beat office on the estate was open for residents to report incidents or concerns.
Anyone with concerns about drugs related activity in their neighbourhood should contact their Safer Neighbourhoods team on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 11.