Police in Islington close drugs premises in partnership with Islington Council
A drugs den at a flat in Ashby House has been closed by police after information from the community of drug misuse and anti-social behaviour at the location.
The closure order was applied for on 22 August by officers from Islington Police's Canonbury Neighbourhood Policing Team, (NPT) and granted by a district judge after information was received by the team in June. Officers have been gathering intelligence identifying the key address involved.
They executed a warrant on 9 August after the team from the newly formed South Neighbourhood Policing Team, in partnership with Islington Council's Housing Department, pro-actively tackled a spate of anti-social behaviour which emanated from the address on the New River Estate. Community-led intelligence concerning drug dealing at the location directed officers to the flat in question.
Officers then worked with the community and compiled evidence which suggested that the occupants of the flat may have been involved in drugs supply. The team applied for a warrant from Highbury Corner Magistrates Court under Section 23 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and executed the warrant in a dawn raid using Islington Police's Borough Support Unit to affect a rapid entry.
A search of the premises uncovered evidence of Class A Drugs Misuse and although no occupants were arrested, police gathered further evidence and intelligence that the tenants were using their home as a base for drug dealing, manufacture, and supply.
Items found included two pipes used for the smoking of crack cocaine. Through a coordinated approach in partnership with residents of Ashby House, Islington Council Community Safety Partnership, and Police, a closure order was applied for from Highbury Corner Magistrates Court.
The closure order was granted and the occupants were given temporary accommodation off the borough of Islington an the drugs premises is now closed. We understand from Islington Council that legal action is underway to repossess the property and exclude the occupants permanently.
Islington Council were successful in obtaining an outright possession order in January 2014, leading to eviction and recovery of the property on 18 February 2014
PC Chris Gould, from the Canonbury NPT said, "This is a very early indication that the new Local Policing Model in Islington is having a very positive effect in keeping people safe in the borough. We undertook an investigation into the activity and uncovered what appeared to be a coordinated system of drug supply, the focal point of which was a flat in Ashby House.
He added, "The effects of the closure order have been extremely positive. Local residents have expressed their gratitude to police and levels of anti-social behaviour have significantly reduced. Such action sends a message to the rest of the community that drug dealing and anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated on this borough and Islington police will continue to keep you as safe as possible."