Four men have been arrested after raids in Bolton this morning, Thursday, as part of an operation to stop county drug lines.

Officers from Greater Manchester Police’s (GMP) county lines team made early morning calls across several addresses to carry out raids with seven warrants.

County lines is the use of dedicated phone lines to deal drugs from one location to another.

Working to stop county lines drug supply and preventing vulnerable people from being exploited, a "challenger" team joined the officers at the addresses to help enter the properties.

The Bolton News: Bolton Warrants

GMP’s serious and organised crime team also joined the efforts and four arrests were made.

Three men, aged 21, 24, and 26, were taken into custody on suspicion of conspiracy to supply drugs, and participation in an organised gang and modern slavery offences.

And one man, aged 26, was arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of drugs.

The four men remain in custody for questioning.

During the searches, an e-bike, Class A and Class B drugs were seized by the officers.

PC Neil Ward was one of the officers involved in the raids.

The Bolton News: Bolton Warrants

He said: “We’re running Operation Peacemaker and have done some inquiries in relation to drug supply in the Bolton area and we are executing a series of warrants in Bolton this morning (Thursday).

“It will depend on what we find at the addresses, but they are all targeted.

“We believe they are involved in drug supply of the Bolton area so there is a good chance that the people involved are targeting vulnerable people which is why we are set up to come here.”

Operation Peacemaker was launched from Operation Flood, which is GMP’s response to county lines drug dealing.

In some instances of county lines gangs, vulnerable people are exploited in order to sell and store drugs.

This can include young children who are lured into a life of crime by older people seeking to convince them to take part in illegal behaviour.

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PC Ward said GMP wants to assure people they are cracking down on drug supply in Bolton to protect the public.

He added: “We are taking steps to combat those who are exploiting vulnerable people in the Bolton and Greater Manchester area.

“A lot of it comes about from intelligence that we get from the community and that is a big help for us.

“Without that help we would not be able to do what we do, and if anyone has got any intelligence, then they can get in touch with us by contacting the police or by using Crimestoppers.”

If you have any information contact police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.