Nearly 20 people, two of them teenagers under 18, have been charged with drug offences after an undercover police operation.

Officers launched the investigation, dubbed Operation Vulcan, in Piccadilly Gardens, central Manchester several months ago.

This week, officers announced that they had charged 19 people with a total of 36 drug offences including conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and possession with intent to supply.

Detective Sergeant Matt Donnelly of Operation Vulcan said: “We are determined to work with our partners across the city centre to tackle drug related crime, disrupt the criminal networks behind it, and ensure the vulnerable people effected receive the very best care and support from specialist support services."

The 19 people charged were found to have come from various areas across the Greater Manchester city region, including Leigh, Swinton, Salford and Wythenshawe.

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The youngest of those caught up in the investigation was a 16-year-old boy who cannot be named for legal reasons.

He was charged with being concerned in the supply of heroin and crack cocaine.

Another teenager, a 17-year-old boy who also cannot be named for legal reasons, was charged with conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

Three other men were bailed pending further enquiries.