AN OPERATION targeting drug dealers in the Bradford district has reached 70 arrests since it was launched a year ago.

Operation Swanpond, introduced in February 2019, has also seized 17 vehicles, more than £7,000 in cash and more than 1,900 'deals.'

The operation is led by the Programme Precision team at Bradford and assisted by neighbourhood policing teams, as well as by West Yorkshire Police's Proactive Intercept Team.

Initially, it focussed on Bradford city centre, using CCTV to target areas where drug dealing was believed to be taking place, but has since moved into other areas of the district including West Bowling, Shipley, Saltaire and Keighley.

At this time, 26 of the 70 arrests made as part of Operation Swanpond have been processed through the courts, with the sentences handed out totalling 69 years and two months.

The operation is running in tandem with Operation Errantdance, which saw an undercover police crackdown on 'ring and bring' drug dealing, between January and July 2019.

Operation Errantdance was concentrated on the Bradford East area, with Prosecutor Alisha Kaye telling Bradford Crown Court in January, at the sentencing of 7 drug dealers jailed for a total of nearly 22 years, that, at the time, 63 defendants had been charged as part of the major police sting.

Detective Inspector Matt Walker, who leads the Precision team at Bradford, said: "The supply of illegal drugs will not be tolerated in the Bradford district and it is targeted operations such as Swanpond and Errantdance that are helping to make a difference and removing these substances and the dealers from our streets.

"The assistance and support of the public is key to the success of operations like these and we would urge people to contact their local policing team if they have information about those who are involved, or suspected of being involved, in the supply of illegal drugs, so action can be taken."