Warwickshire Police - County Lines Digital Awareness Package

Awareness films about elements of County Lines by Nuneaton North Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT). Designed for use with young people.

County Lines
County lines is the name given to drug dealing where organised criminal groups (OCGs) use phone lines to move and supply drugs, usually from cities into smaller towns and rural areas.

They exploit vulnerable people, including children and those with mental health or addiction issues, by recruiting them to distribute the drugs, often referred to as ‘drug running’.

OCGs often use high levels of violence and intimidation to protect the ‘county line’ and control them. One of these forms of control exploits vulnerable people by using their home as a base for dealing drugs, a process known as cuckooing.

Elements of "County Lines"
County lines is the name given to drug dealing where organised criminal groups (OCGs) use phone lines to move and supply drugs, usually from cities into smaller towns and rural areas.

They exploit vulnerable people, including children and those with mental health or addiction issues, by recruiting them to distribute the drugs, often referred to as ‘drug running’.

OCGs often use high levels of violence and intimidation to protect the ‘county line’ and control them.

One of these forms of control exploits vulnerable people by using their home as a base for dealing drugs, a process known as cuckooing.

There are several signs to look out for that may indicate someone is involved in county lines:

  • repeatedly going missing from school or home and being found in other areas

  • having money, new clothes or electronic devices and they can't explain how they paid for them

  • getting high numbers of texts or phone calls, being secretive about who they're speaking to

  • decline in school or work performance

  • significant changes in emotional or physical well-being.

Cuckooing
Dealers often convince the vulnerable person to let their home be used for drug dealing by giving them free drugs or offering to pay for food or utilities.

Often OCGs target people who are lonely, isolated, or have addiction issues. It's common for OCGs to use a property for a short amount of time, moving address frequently to reduce the chance of being caught.

Signs to look out for
There are several signs to look out for that may indicate someone is a victim of cuckooing:

  • frequent visitors at unsociable hours

  • changes in your neighbour’s daily routine

  • unusual smells coming from a property

  • suspicious or unfamiliar vehicles outside an address.

Contact Warwickshire Police
If you’re concerned about drug-related crime in your area or think someone may be a victim of drug exploitation, please call us on 101.

If it's an emergency, please call 999. If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use the textphone service 18000. Or text on 999.

For further advice and information, visit: https://www.warwickshire.police.uk/

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