Gun found in a hedge during dawn raids to tackle drugs dealers in Northamptonshire

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More than 100 police officers have been deployed in a major operation to target drugs and firearms on an estate in Wellingborough.

Sixteen firearms warrants were executed at addresses across the Hemmingwell estate, with simultaneous raids taking place shortly after 6am today (Wednesday).

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The operation, one of the biggest of its kind in the county for several years, saw a string of addresses targeted in early morning raids by police - including 25 firearms officers - searching for drugs and firearms on the estate.

Detective Chief Inspector Nick Lyall, who led today’s operation, said: “This morning’s operation came in response to an increase in information coming to the police about groups of drug dealers who had been using firearms to intimidate rival drug dealers and other people. Firearms were deployed because of the heightened risk to the public.

A quantity of drugs has been recovered as well as a gun during the operation. Two people are in custody for supplying drugs and one for possession of drugs. Another person has been arrested on an immigration offence.

“This was a very successful operation where we have taken a firearm and drugs off the street which is going to make the area a safer place for people to live in.”

Following this morning’s raids, a number of uniformed officers were deployed to the estate to reassure residents in the wake of the police operation.

Northamptonshire Police has urged people in the area to report any suspicious incidents to them on 101. Alternatively, they can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.