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Police continue to focus on drug and other crimes in Caithness

By Gordon Calder

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EFFORTS to tackle drug and other crimes in Caithness have continued this week as part of an ongoing police initiative.

Operation Ruling was launched last Friday after significant public engagement had been undertaken to identify key priorities for the area.

It was followed up by intelligence-gathering into drug crime in the far north and resulted in several drugs warrants being executed and quantities of substances seized over the weekend.

Drug enforcement activity continued this week and on Monday, stop and search activity was carried out in Murchison Street, Wick, where cannabis was recovered.

A personal search of an individual in Stainland Drive, Thurso, took place two days later and again, cannabis was seized.

These recoveries resulted in a 24-year-old man being arrested under the Misuse of Drugs Act and another man, aged 40, being issued with a Recorded Police Warning.

A Recorded Police Warning was also issued in connection to drugs offences identified at a property in Henrietta Street, Wick on Tuesday.

Road safety was another of the identified priorities to target during Operation Ruling and following last weekend’s road checks, further stops were carried out throughout the Caithness between Monday and Thursday.

That resulted in two drivers being reported to the procurator fiscal for tachograph offences, while another was charged for speeding. Two other motorists and a cyclist were issued with warnings relating to their behaviour while on the roads.

During the vehicle checks, cannabis was recovered within two cars and both drivers have been reported to the procurator fiscal for drug driving offences.

Operation Ruling also targets violence and after some arrests for serious assaults over the weekend a 21-year-old man was arrested in the Springpark area of Thurso on Tuesday in connection with a breach of curfew.

The police say enforcement and engagement activity will continue and anyone wishing to speak with the local team on any policing matter can contact 101, or email directly to CaithnessCPT@scotland.pnn.police.uk.

Chief Inspector, Jamie Wilson, local area commander for Caithness, said: "When we launched Operation Ruling last week, we wanted to make it clear to the local communities that their safety, wellbeing and viewpoints matter greatly to us and we hope our activity so far has demonstrated this.

"My officers and I are immensely grateful to the public for their engagement and support of this operation so far. The information you’ve provided us with has helped with the recovery of various quantities and values of drugs and resulted in numerous arrests and reports for a range of offences.

"We remain committed to tackling all forms of crime affecting the Caithness area and building a relationship of trust and co-operation with these communities.

"So far during Operation Ruling, we’ve deployed resources from across Highlands and Islands Division, which should once again signal our intent to use all assets at our disposal to keep the Caithness public safe and improve their overall quality of life."

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