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Tri borough policing operation launched to tackle Finsbury Park drug deals

PUBLISHED: 10:41 04 December 2018 | UPDATED: 11:44 04 December 2018

Severn Sisters Road at Finsbury Park.Picture:Ken Mears

Severn Sisters Road at Finsbury Park.Picture:Ken Mears

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Islington, Hackney and Haringey launched a joint policing operation to stamp out drug dealing in Finsbury Park yesterday.

Finsbury Park.Picture:Ken MearsFinsbury Park.Picture:Ken Mears

Islington, Hackney and Haringey launched a joint policing operation to stamp out drug dealing in Finsbury Park yesterday.

It comes a week after Morrisons in the Holloway Road turfed out a group of people accused of taking drugs and causing trouble in the stairs to the supermarket.

Customers complained of open drug use and seeing “human faeces on the walls and floors” – but the supermarket giant moved them on in accordance with its “zero tolerance approach to anti-social behaviour”.

Blackstock Road Finsbury Park.Picture:Ken MearsBlackstock Road Finsbury Park.Picture:Ken Mears

Sgt Matt Stringer, of Finsbury Park Police, told the Gazette: “In terms of a longer term solution, I have today announced a joint tri borough operation between Islington, Hackney and Haringey Police, working in partnership with Islington, Hackney and Haringey Councils to target drug use and drug supply in and around Finsbury Park.

“This will use a range of tactics to target those involved in drug supply or who possess drugs and work in partnership with our partners to support the victims of drug use and the wider community.”

Finsbury Park police have also worked with Islington Council and the Nag’s Head Town Centre Management Group to produce an “environmental visual audit” (EVA) of the area.

EVAs are detailed plans that identify what anti-social behaviour problems there are in a particular place before suggesting actions to tackle them.

Sgt Stringer added: “I recognise that the police in isolation, cannot deal with anti-social behaviour and drug dealing and we welcome support from our partners to tackle this.

“In this instance, this looks like outreach support, proactive police patrols, education and where appropriate enforcement, from environmental health colleagues and providing support to businesses to assist in reducing antisocial behaviour [ASB].”

Sgt Stringer has also secured extra resources, so there are now six constables and a community support officer dedicated to Finsbury Park ward.

He added: “Anti-Social Behaviour through drug use and supply continues to be a priority in the Finsbury Park Ward, and the area around the Nags Head Town Centre, is one in which my team regularly patrol.”

The police chief also confirmed Morrisons “have recently taken action by closing the stairwells in the carpark, which was a hotspot for drug use.”

Cllr Gary Heather (Lab, Finsbury Park) welcomed the crackdown on drug dealing and anti-social behaviour in and around Finsbury Park.

He said: “They’ve done a crime audit and gone into specifics which is good because it means they’re mapping out where the problems are.

“I know the police are targeting the Finsbury Park area as a whole because the crime level has gone up substantially – every day there is something going on.”

Cllr Heather signalled out Axminster Road and Windsor Road as two of the worst areas for “open drug dealing”.

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