To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to tackle county lines drug trafficking and safeguard vulnerable children form exploitation.
9 June 2020
We are investing £25m to crack down on county lines gangs in 19/20 and 20/21. Through our county lines programme we are expanding the National County Lines Co-ordination Centre, increasing disruption on the rail networks by British Transport Police, delivering operational intensification in the three key exporting areas, investing in new technology including Automatic Number Plate Recognition and providing increased support for victims of county lines exploitation. Our investment is already delivering results; as a result of the first phase, be-tween November 2019 and March 2020, police forces have made over 650 arrests, closed nearly 140 deal lines, seized cash and drugs with a total value of over £3 million, and made over 100 weapons seizures. Officers have also safeguarded scores of individuals, including 140 children, from being ex-ploited by these gangs.