HUNDREDS of officers swooped on the borough in a series of raids over two days to remove drug dealers from the streets of Brent.
Officers smashed their way into 10 addresses at 6am on Wednesday (Nov 11) after an 18-month undercover investigation. Crack cocaine and cannabis were found during the sting and ten people were arrested.
The operation, codenamed Soto, was carried out in two parts, to tackle the supply of Class A drugs in the borough.
As part of the same operation three shops were raided on Tuesday (Nov 10) afternoon in Harlesden. They were Spicey Nicey, a fast food restaurant; Jetmax, a computer shop; and Xawaaladda Amal Express, an internet café. Spicey Nicey has been closed and eight people were arrested.
Phase one of Operation Soto was carried out in October and resulted in 12 people being charged for 49 offences relating to the supply of class A drugs. They are currently remanded in custody awaiting trial.
Police will be visiting neighbours in the area over the next couple of days to reassure the community and the number of patrols will be stepped up.
Mark Toland, borough commander of Brent Police, said: "Our community told us that drug dealing in this area was affecting their daily lives and gave us the information that has enabled us to launch this operation. With our residents support we can arrest the criminals responsible, and make life safer and more pleasant for those that live, work or visit the borough.
Mr Toland is also appealing to anyone with further information to contact their Safer Neighbourhood Team.
Hussein Hersi, from Brent Police Independent Advisory Group, said: "Operations like these not only apprehend criminals and deter more crime they also give confidence and reassurance to the community, this is the key thing that I observed yesterday."
Those charged and found guilty could face prison sentences of at least four years.
Councillor Hayley Matthews (Lib Dem), responsible for crime prevention and public safety, added: "I would like to congratulate the police on yet another successful operation to remove a significant number of drug dealers from our streets. I hope that this operation sends a message to those that cause harm to our community that they will not get away with it, that they will be caught. It is also important to recognise the role that the community have played in bringing this operation about. Once again we have shown what can be achieved when we work together to make Brent a safer place."