The police made 25 arrests in early morning raids yesterday on what the Met described as “seven commercial premises” along South Norwood High Street and Portland Road, “targeting those believed to be involved in gang activity, drug supply and violence”, according to a statement from the Metropolitan Police.
Local police were supported by units from across London in what they called “a large policing operation”, as they served warrants in South Norwood and Woodside wards.
“This operation has been conducted in a direct response to local concerns regarding levels of crime in South Norwood,” the police said.
“The focus of police activity has been against those individuals believed involved in serious crime including violence, firearms offences, the supply of controlled drugs, burglary and theft.”
The swoop on South Norwood was part of an operation that included addresses in Wandsworth and Lewisham conducted by the Met’s Violent Crime Taskforce Team.
The 25 suspects were arrested on suspicion of a range of offences including possession of firearms, possession of Class A drugs with intent to supply, and handling stolen goods. All suspects have been taken to a south London police station where they remain in custody.
The police said: “Officers have seized around £50,000 in cash and a quantity of Class A and B drugs, and a stun gun. During the course of the investigation, a number of firearms were also recovered.”
The operation was the culmination of an 18-month investigation.
The community policing event tonight from 6pm will be attended by Croydon Borough Commander Dave Stringer and ward officers, where they will discuss residents’ concerns about the operation and policing in the area more generally.
Stanley Halls is at 12 South Norwood Hill, SE25 6AB.
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