A commercial premises in Thornton Heath has been raided by police as part of an operation to tackle County Lines drug dealing.

This green Lamborghini was seized and five arrests made as part of joint operation between the Met and Hampshire police to tackle County Lines drug dealing, which has been praised by Priti Patel.

The Home Secretary Tweeted: “Great progress in rolling up these ruthless drugs gangs – proud of the officers involved.”

The initiative saw four addresses hit simultaneously by police in the early hours of Tuesday including the premises on Beulah Road.

Officers from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command officers also carried out search warrants at residential addresses in:

– Rigby Close, Croydon;

– Derwent Road, Beckenham;

– Scarbrook Road, Croydon.

Specialist entry equipment was used to access the address in Rigby Road as the entrance had been secured with metal bars.

During searches of the addresses, officers seized three vehicles, two Mercedes and a green Lamborghini. 

The Lamborghini and cash (pictured) were found at the Rigby Road address.

All five suspects were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs. They have all been taken to a police station in Hampshire where they remain in custody.

Acting Detective Chief Inspector Ant Jones, from the Specialist Crime Command, said: “Investigating and disrupting county lines activity remains a priority for the Met. There is an inextricable link between the supply of drugs and violence.

“Officers are continuing to carry out intelligence-led operations, even under the current public health crisis, in order to dismantle and disrupt organised criminality and put those breaking the law behind bars.”

The government has invested £25m in providing funding to police to tackle County Lines criminality. 

Chief Inspector Mark Lynch from Hampshire Constabulary said: “The threat from county lines drug dealing continues to present a significant risk to vulnerable children and adults living within Hampshire, despite the current Covid-19 restrictions the country finds itself in.

“Please be reassured that despite the operational challenges the pandemic poses to us and other front line emergency services, tackling organised crime in all its various guises remains our core focus and operations to disrupt criminals who attempt to profit from drug dealing will continue. Not only will we prosecute those found responsible to the full extent of the law, but we will also seek to maximise every opportunity to strip them of their illicit gains.

“The sad reality is that vulnerable young people are often targeted, coerced with either threats or false promises of cash and designer possessions, when in reality those criminals regard those children as nothing more than a disposable asset, to be used and abused until they have no longer have any need for them. The added dimension of Covid-19 just presents yet another serious health risk to those youths and those that they associate with.

“By working effectively with the wider Hampshire and Isle of Wight partnerships, we seek not only to help those in need at this time, but also to stop and deter other children in the future becoming entangled in this emotive and horrific area of modern day criminality.”