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OPERATION DISRUPT; Machete, guns and a samurai sword seized as police go on offensive.

Byline: Report by Liam Keen

POLICE seized drugs and weapons in a major crackdown in Cannock - as statistics show a reduction in crime across the district.

A samurai sword, machete, a BB gun and a rifle were recovered by officers after they stormed two addresses as part of Operation Disrupt. The operation began in July and was made up of local officers, special constables and specialist staff from across the Staffordshire Police force, in a bid to tackle violent crime and drug offences.

Raids An Express & Star photographer and reporter were embedded with the police on an operation yesterday as a tactical support unit and Cannock neighbourhood police officers joined forces to raid two homes.

Firstly they targeted a house on Herondale in Hednesford, using a chainsaw and battering ram to remove the front door within seconds.

Officers then stormed inside and arrested a 32-year-old man on suspicion of possession of Class B drugs with intent to supply after a quantity of drugs was seized alongside a machete and a BB gun after sniffer dogs scoured the home.

The same chainsaw and battering ram was then used to knock through the door of a home on Bath Road in Cannock. Of-ficers found a man on the toilet and detained him, but he was not arrested.

A search of the home from the dogs unit found a pellet gun rifle and a samurai sword. A separate warrant carried out by another team on Operation Disrupt raided a home on Melchester Walk, where a 21-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possession of Class A and B drugs with intent to supply. This comes as a police chief has said the district is becoming "safer" - with statistics showing crime is falling. Chief Inspector Sarah Wainwright, the Cannock Chase Neighbourhood Policing Team Commander, said: "We're tackling what our public is most concerned about -this is making the borough safer." Figures show that in 12 months from July 31 2018 to July 31 2019, town centre violence has reduced across the district by 26 per cent from 1,789 to 1,492. Youth offending is down by nine per cent from 598 to 557, less serious violence with injury, such as assault offences, is down by 27 per cent from 212 and 131 - while crime as a whole is down five per cent from 6,814 to 6,448.

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Publication:Express and Star (Wolverhampton, England)
Date:Aug 24, 2019
Words:395
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