Drugs: Crime

Home Office written question – answered am ar 23 Mai 2024.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Damien Moore Damien Moore Ceidwadwyr, Southport

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps his Department is taking to help tackle (a) antisocial behaviour and (b) other (i) dangerous and (ii) illicit acts caused by illegal drug cultivation.

Photo of Chris Philp Chris Philp The Minister of State, Home Department

Drugs devastate lives, ruin families and damage communities. The Government's ten-year Drugs Strategy demonstrates our commitment to cut off the supply of drugs, reduce their recreational use and make the UK a significantly harder place for organised crime groups to operate in. Through our end-to-end plan to tackle drug supply, we are tackling the supply of drugs at every level from production overseas to cultivation in the UK. Our approach recognises that the organised criminals behind drug cultivation are often involved in a range of wider offences including firearms, money laundering, slavery and human trafficking.

Working with the National Crime Agency, the Regional Organised Crime Unit network and a range of agency partners, police in England and Wales coordinated Operation Mille - the most significant operation of its kind aimed at disrupting organised crime groups by dismantling large-scale cannabis farms – a key source of illicit income for organised crime gangs. Throughout June of 2023, police executed over 1,000 search warrants, arresting hundreds of individuals and seized 20 firearms, over £635,000 in cash and over 180,000 cannabis plants worth around £130 million. Of those arrested, more than 450 were later charged with a range of offences. The Home Office provided police with £1.5m funding in 2023/24 to support Operation Mille.

Last year the Government launched the Anti-social Behaviour Action Plan ensuring the police, local authorities and other relevant agencies have the tools and powers they need to tackle anti-social behaviour. Under the Plan, which is backed by £160m of funding, we are taking a zero-tolerance approach to all forms of anti-social behaviour, including by toughening up the police response to drugs, expanding testing on arrest and banning nitrous oxide.

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