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‘Victims of modern slavery’ found in ‘dirty’ drug den as police raid properties across Hartlepool

‘Victims of modern slavery’ found in ‘dirty’ drug den as police raid properties across Hartlepool

Two men thought to be victims of modern-day slavery have been found in a home in Hartlepool in a day full of activity for the police force.

Tuesday saw the launch of Cleveland Police’s Operation Artemis and officers had their hands full with seizures of cash, drugs, weapons and total of 11 arrests. The new initiative is set to bring together force resources and regional partners each month in a different district and this week the spotlight was on Hartlepool.

The day began with an early morning briefing at Hartlepool Town Hall Theatre where officers were briefed on the aim of the operation and plans for the day of action focused on targeting crime and anti-social behaviour. Throughout the day officers across the town carried out simultaneous raids at several addresses, uncovering a hive of illegal activity.

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From suspected victims of modern slavery hiding behind a plasterboard wall to cannabis farms and drink and drug drivers, the day was spent uncovering crime across the region.

Superintendent Martin Hopps said: “The operation is multi-faceted and designed to reassure the public of the work carried out by police every day.

“It pools all of our resources together to show the impact we can have on the community, executing warrants and carrying out arrests, and essentially showcasing what we do. We’re sending out the message to the public that we are here, we are listening to concerns and will respond to the issues they raise with us.”

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  • June 25, 2023