POLICE have carried out a series of early-morning raids in Aberdeenshire, seizing illegal drugs and recovering more than £2,500.
The haul included heroin, cannabis, amphetamines, M-Cat, cocaine and diazepam.
Twelve drugs search warrants were executed over four days in Inverurie, Ellon, Westhill, Huntly and Fraserburgh, following intelligence received from local communities.
Inquiries are continuing into the seizures and five people will be reported to the procurator fiscal in connection with drug and other offences. A number of referrals have been made to the Community Substance Misuse Service.
The raids are part of Operation Hotspur which was launched in Aberdeenshire in November last year to tackle illegal drugs, and brings together Grampian Police, Aberdeenshire Council, NHS Grampian and the Scottish Prison Service.
Detective Constable Craig Dunbar said: “Operation Hotspur was launched last November with a new two-pronged approach to tackling illegal drugs and the associated issues in Aberdeenshire.
“Clearly drug raids play an important role but the operation is about more than that. It’s also about working with our partners through the drug and alcohol partnership to break the cycle of offending by dealing with the root causes of drug use.
“That is why it is particularly pleasing that a number of people have decided to take up the services on offer by the Community Substance Misuse Service to help them break free from addiction.”
DC Dunbar added: “The activity in the Garioch, Marr and Formatine areas is the first occasion Operation Hotspur has taken place outwith Banff and Buchan, and is a further demonstration of our commitment to ensuring that Aberdeenshire remains one of the safest places in the country to live and work.
“The success we’ve seen both in the latest activity and over the first couple of months of Operation Hotspur shows clearly what can be achieved when police, the Community Substance Misuse Service and the local community work hand in hand.”
Officers would like to see Operation Hotspur rolled out across the rest of the region.
If you have any information relating to drugs or any other crime in your area, you can contact Grampian Police on 0845 600 5700 or, if you wish to remain anonymous, by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.