Arrests and weapons seized as police target criminals using road network
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Thirteen people were arrested and two weapons taken off the streets of Bedfordshire after a regional operation targeting criminal gangs using the road network.
Bedfordshire was one of nine forces involved in last week’s operation to tackle cross-border crime.
The aim of the operation was to target those who cause the most harm to local communities through drug, violent and acquisitive crime like burglary.
It utilised Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology and police intelligence to target vehicles on arterial roads and motorways, as well as those using the railway network.
In Bedfordshire vehicle stops, stop searches and arrests were made on the M1 and in Bedford, Dunstable, Luton and Sandy.
A knife and a firearm were seized, tools were seized from a suspected burglar, while drugs worth thousands of pounds were also seized during the local operation.
Across the three days, a total of 160 people were arrested for a wide range of offences including robbery, burglary, theft of motor vehicles, possession of offensive weapons, grievous bodily harm, breach of court orders and drug offences.
A further 83 vehicles were also seized, 22 weapons were recovered and 74 drug seizures were made.
More than £262,000 in cash was also recovered by officers, while a number of enquiries remain ongoing.
Detective Chief Inspector James Panter, from Bedfordshire Police, said: “Organised crime goes across borders and it is only by working together that we can truly tackle the criminal networks behind it.
“These are some excellent results which should reassure our communities of the work going on to tackle this offending and ensure Bedfordshire and the wider region is a hostile place for criminal activity.
“This all sends a clear message to those who travel to commit crime that we will utilise everything at our disposal and work with our policing colleagues to catch up with you.”