£500,000 Doncaster drugs raid ‘disrupts organised crime’: Police column

A significant drugs seizure, valued in excess of half a million pounds, occurred recently in one of our towns in the Doncaster East neighbourhood, writes Insp Mark Payling.

Thursday, 2nd May 2019, 8:15 am
Updated Thursday, 9th May 2019, 9:20 am

Our officers raided a unit on Thorne Enterprise Park, King Edward Road, and seized 950 cannabis plants. The street value of these is estimated to be around half a million pounds.

No arrests were made, but this action has disrupted the activities of organised criminals.

Residents in nearby Stainforth may have wondered why so many police vehicles were on Church Road on Friday April 26. There were five armed response vehicles, a dog handler and 12 officers.

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This was because of an ongoing issue with a person believed to have been suffering with mental health issues.

Thankfully, the matter was resolved relatively quickly with the person seeking support at hospital.

Stainforth has also had had an issue with people riding mopeds in an anti social and dangerous manner. Photographs were published on our Facebook page, together with pictures of the riders of two quad bikes, which had been captured driving dangerously recently. We have now been provided with some lines of enquiry to identify some of these riders.

During the past month, police and prison officials have worked on tackling illicit items in our local prisons. A few weeks ago, officers ran a seven-day operation at HMP Doncaster, Moorland and Lindholme, aimed at preventing these items from entering prisons.

They were joined by prison staff to look at tackling the four main ways illicit items are usually brought into prisons; by way of being thrown into the grounds, through the post or being brought in by visitors or staff members. As a result, two people were arrested, charged and remanded in custody after trying to take in items including mobile phones and tobacco. This work also enabled us to speak to hundreds of visitors and staff members about the dangers of trying to bring illicit items into prison, which could lead to a prison sentence for themselves. We also used the off-road bike team, mounted team and dedicated drone surveillance during the operation, which ensured the perimeter of each prison remained secure and identified any items being thrown into the grounds.

Residents in Moorends will be aware we have been working to tackle burglaries over the past few months. As part of this work, a 14-year-old boy has been charged with several offences over the weekend and is now remanded in custody. I will continue to check the crime figures in the area to keep an eye on the issue.

In the Hatfield ward, we have seen a slight increase in residential burglaries with nine offences recorded between 29 March and 29 April. These occurred in Dunsville (one), Hatfield Woodhouse (two), Dunscroft (three) and Hatfield (three). In a few of these crimes, the family car was stolen. We recovered one of these vehicles last week and arrested two people in the early hours on suspicion of committing a commercial burglary and going equipped to steal.

We also recovered a Subaru Forrester from an address in Dunscroft, which we believe has been used in crime.

With regard to Armthorpe, the Community Engagement Meeting was well attended a few weeks ago, and the issues of speeding vehicles, high visibility patrols and antisocial beahviour were identified as issues. Our efforts to tackle the issues identified last month have clearly had a positive effect with positive feedback received about parking on Tranmoor Lane.

In the Askern and Norton ward, PCSOs have continued regular foot patrols at Campsall Country Park, Warren House Park and Clay Pond in an attempt to spot and identify any off road bikers. We have not been able to identify any offenders at this time, but I urge readers who may have information to contact us via Facebook or email. We also executed a drugs warrant on Westfield Crescent but nothing was recovered.

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Finally, I wanted to highlight an emerging crime trend we have seen over the past few months. It relates to items bought counterfeit notes. We have received complaints where a person selling an item, usually a mobile phone or electronics, on Facebook Market place or Gumtree, is contacted by the suspect, who agrees to buy the item and arranges collection from the sellers home address. The pay in cash, usually in £20 notes. The victim later realises that the cash is fake after the suspect has left with the goods. Please do not get caught out.

You can meet me at one of our community engagement meetings or contact me via out Facebook engagement event – further details are on our website. You can signing up to our police alerts on our website (www.southyorks.police.uk) or follow us on Facebook at Doncaster East NHP or look at our website, www.southyorks.police.uk.