POLICE arrested 11 people in a series of early-morning raids earlier today which targeted a county lines gang supplying class A drugs in Swindon.

The operation involved more than 80 officers and staff along with numerous volunteer special officers. Six Swindon men aged 16, 17, 20, 16, 33, and 46, three men aged 18, and a Swindon woman aged 33 have all been arrested on suspicion of supplying Class A drugs. All are in custody at Gablecross Police Station.

A 22-year-old woman charged with obstructing police has been released on unconditional bail until her hearing at Swindon Magistrates Court next month. While carrying out the drugs warrants, police seized a large quantity of drugs, money, weapons and other items under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Inspector Dave Hobman from Swindon South community policing team said: “This type of organised drug dealing is something we are committed to tackling in Swindon. Not only do drugs cause misery for the users, but children are being exploited and there is a knock-on impact for the local community, including violence and criminality.

"These warrants are the culmination of lengthy investigation and show fantastic teamwork between communities, our community policing teams and our specialist departments.”

Superintendent Adrian Burt, hub commander for Swindon, added: “We hope these arrests show that we will not tolerate drug dealing in our town, particularly when it involves offenders coming into Swindon from elsewhere and recruiting local people as drug runners and dealers.

“To be successful in tackling County Lines, we need local people to work with us and give us the information we need to investigate these people. We all have a role to play in keeping our communities safe, so please make contact with us if you have any information.”

To report drug dealing or suspicious behaviour in the community, call 101, or 999 if it's urgent and a crime is in progress.