HOMES were raided and arrests were made as police crackdown on crime in Ellesmere Port.

A series of warrants took place in Ellesmere Port and Chester as part of investigations into the supply of cocaine and cannabis today, Wednesday, March 6.

Two separate operations – Operation Heracles and Operation Leonardo - took place targeting organised crime groups (OCGs) believed to be involved in the large-scale supply of cocaine and cannabis in Cheshire.

The day involved more than 250 officers; including those from Cheshire Police’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit (SOCU), Ellesmere Port Proactive Team, and other specialist resources, including police dogs.

A total of 19 warrants were executed at addresses across Ellesmere Port and Chester, following a morning briefing at Cheshire Police Headquarters in Winsford.

During the warrants, several kilos of cannabis and over £65,000 cash was seized.

A total of 17 men were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to supply cannabis and money laundering. These included:

Two 22-year-olds, two 24-year-olds, a 25-year-old, a 26-year-old, two 27-year-olds, a 28-year-old, a 29-year-old, two 30-year-olds, two 31-year-olds, a 32-year-old, and a 33-year-old.

A 31-year-old from Dodleston, Chester is also being held on suspicion of conspiracy to supply cocaine.

Detective Chief Inspector Nick Henderson, of the Serious and Organised Crime Unit, said: “Today’s arrests are a result of investigations into those believed to be involved in the supply of cocaine and cannabis in Chester and Ellesmere Port.

“Operation Heracles and Operation Leonardo centre on two separate OCGs responsible for the large-scale supply of cannabis and cocaine in the Ellesmere Port and Chester areas.

“Numerous search warrants have taken place this morning, with drugs, cash, and motor vehicles seized, along with kilo amounts of cannabis.

“I hope this demonstrates that our teams are committed to doing all we can to tackle drug-related crimes, and that these raids provide reassurance to the community.

“Illegal drugs have a devastating impact on local communities so by cutting off the supply and removing dealers from our streets, we are working to break the cycle of serious and organised crime and make Cheshire a safer place.

“If you believe drug criminality is taking place in your neighbourhood, please report it to us and we will do the rest.”