Police successes in the war on drugs have seen twice as many dealers arrested this year as last, local politicians have heard.
In tandem with word of progress in tackling cross-border crime in the area, the news emerged as Upper Bann MLA Jo-Anne Dobson and Banbridge Councillor Glenn Barr met District Commander, Superintendent David Moore.
The Ulster Unionists met the police chief following a tour of the new custody facility at Banbridge’s PSNI station.
Among other things, the two welcomed the facility’s use in detaining an increased number of drug dealers, and they cheered police efforts to stem the tide of illegal narcotics.
Applauding what she called the continued success of local patrols, Mrs Dobson said: “I am heartened to hear that ongoing operations being conducted by the PSNI have been achieving results and especially in the field of removing illegal drugs, and those who engage in this trade, from our streets.”
Mr Barr said: “ I welcome the successes which the police have been having against drug dealers and commend those officers involved in those successes.
“Like so many in the community I want to see those who offer our community nothing but death taken off our streets for good.”
There was appreciation too for the investment represented by the new custody facility, which recently became fully operational.
“Following significant investment, of £800,000,” said Mrs Dobson, “The new facilities are certainly state-of-the art and I welcome this level of investment into Banbridge station.
“I also welcome the fact that their usage is increasing when it comes to detaining those involved in the illegal drugs trade.
“During our meeting with Superintendent Moore we raised the continued impact which cross-border crime has been having in Banbridge and it was good to hear that PSNI patrols have been achieving successes and I encourage their continued work to catch those responsible for burglaries throughout the district.
“We also discussed domestic violence rates and speeding as well as response times and a number of confidential cases.”
Mr Barr added: “I would thank Superintendent Moore for his ongoing engagement with Jo-Anne and myself as we continue to relay concerns and queries we receive from local people in our roles as local political representatives.”