Exmouth police seize cocaine in pub swoops
EXMOUTH police seized cocaine and cannabis - and made a series of arrests - when they carried out a drug swoop on the town s pubs and clubs.
EXMOUTH police seized cocaine and cannabis - and made a series of arrests - when they carried out a drug swoop on the town's pubs and clubs.
The high-profile police operation took place on Friday night when officers from across the force, armed with sniffers dogs, were brought in alongside local police to stamp out the problem of drug use in the town.
Partygoers were faced with compulsory drug testing before they could gain entry to one of the town's popular clubs.
Police said similar drug swoops would be carried out in the future.
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Exmouth police chief, Inspector Jez Capey, said the operation was carried out with the cooperation of the town's pubs.
He said police made a number of arrests and seized the cannabis and cocaine. People found in possession of drugs were issued with orders to attend the police station.
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Inspector Capey said: "We had a very successful operation. It was more about reassurance.
"Generally, it was well-natured. We are aware that people go out and enjoy themselves. People do take drugs out and use them and we wanted to tackle that problem."
Eight of the town's busiest pubs were visited by officers.
The police relied on intelligence to pinpoint the pubs worst-affected by recreational drug users, said Inspector Capey.
Partygoers heading to Fahrenheit nightclub, in The Parade, found they were unable to go into the club until a compulsory drug swipe had been carried out.
With the co-operation of the club management, the police made it a condition of entry that clubbers gave a skin swab from the palm of their hand to test for drug use.
Those who failed the test were given advice by officers.
Brixington neighbourhood beat manager PC Dave Evans said officers recognised drug use among pubgoers was a problem - but not one reserved solely to Exmouth.
He said: "It's well known that there are issues in terms of cannabis and recreational drug use in Exmouth. But it's no different to other towns of its size.
"We want to make people aware. It's not just the drug use, it is the organised crime that goes with it. It's the bigger picture.