Northern Ireland news

Drugs worth £11,000 seized during searches in west Belfast

Some of the materials seized in the police operation

POLICE seized suspected drugs worth more than £11,000 during searches in west Belfast yesterday as part of an operation targeting the INLA.

Detectives from the Paramilitary Crime Task Force (PCTF) seized suspected cocaine with an estimated street value of £3,000, suspected cannabis worth about £8,400 and around £4,000 in cash.

A man and woman, both aged 28, were arrested on suspicion of various drugs offences and yesterday remained in police custody.

Police said this morning that the 28-year-old man had been charged with possessing criminal property, possession of a Class A Controlled drug, possession of a Class A Controlled drug with intent to supply, possession of a Class B Controlled drug and possession of a Class B Controlled drug with intent to supply.

He is due to appear at Belfast Magistrates Court on Tuesday 29th September.

A detective inspector said: "The PCTF will continue to proactively investigate suspected drug criminality linked to the INLA at every opportunity.

"Today's search and arrests are further evidence of our commitment to tackle drug criminality linked to paramilitaries and reduce the harm caused by drugs in the community."

Police urged anyone with information that could assist in efforts to tackle illicit drugs to phone 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

PCTF was established by the PSNI, HM Revenue and Customs and the National Crime Agency to tackle criminality linked to paramilitarism as part of a Stormont action plan.

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