Drug Runners: CCTV shows mad rush to dealer’s car that sparked police purge on pushers
March 14, 2013, 1:43 pm
Incredible CCTV footage has been released by West Midlands Police showing drug users flocking after a dealers car in scenes described as being like “excited children pouncing on an ice-cream van”.
The previously unseen footage shows tens of addicts racing after a drug dealers car as he pulls into a Bordesley Green street just yards away from a childrens nursery.
It prompted a police investigation – appropriately named Operation No Deal – that resulted in 29 men being jailed for a total of more than 100 years for drug supply offences.
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And the purge on pushers also saw a 20 per cent fall in associated crimes in Bordesley Green like burglary and robbery as police helped local residents ‘reclaim their community.
The CCTV footage will be shown on BBC1 tomorrow morning (11am, March 15) as part of the Caught Red Handed series which shows ingenious ways West Midlands Police are trapping offenders and cutting crime.
Birmingham Police Detective Chief Inspector Nick Walton, said: “Youd imagine drug transactions are carried out in a discrete manner – but the footage we obtained shows around 30 people rush towards the dealers car in broad daylight.
“Id never seen anything like it in my police career and it was clear we needed to take decisive action to tackle the problem. No-one should be expected to put up with drug dealing on their doorstep: it attracts an undesirable element and is invariably linked to wider criminality.”
That ‘decisive action saw undercover detectives getting close to the dealers and use miniature surveillance cameras to record their activity and gather crucial evidence.
They captured shocking footage of audacious dealers peddling heroin and crack cocaine in parks and even childrens playgrounds.
But when detectives had established the main players and secured vital information police arrest units carried out dawn raids as suspects doors were smashed open in a series of simultaneous strikes across Birmingham.
Chief Insp Walton, added: “We achieved a 100 per cent success rate with every one of our targets arrested and put before the courts; the evidence wed secured against them was so strong that they all pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.
“The mobile phones we seized from drug supply ring leaders showed they were taking up to 650 calls in 24 hours and carrying out £8,000 worth of ‘business in a day.
“These people have been taken off the streets and jailed for many years…and now theyve been ‘outed as drug dealers well be able to offender manage them closely in future.
“Operation No Deal has fundamentally improved areas of Birmingham that had been blighted by drugs. Local residents are telling us they feel safer and more comfortable in their communities – that great to hear.”
Caught Red Handed – presented by Dominic Littlewood – will be aired every weekday till March 22 and is expected to reach around 1.5-million viewers every day.
Other West Midlands Police ‘stings caught on camera and featuring across the series include the use of covert cameras built into traffic lights to catch illegal street racers, forensic marking to trace metal thieves and ‘Capture Houses acting as bait to lure burglars..
More dramatic, previously unseen video footage will be released on the West Midlands Police YouTube channel next week.