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Drug dealer arrested following installation of new CCTV cameras

A known drug dealer has been arrested following the recent installation of new CCTV cameras in Allen Gardens. 

The arrest took place at the end of July after the council’s CCTV staff saw an individual on a bike selling drugs in the park to a number of known class A drug users. 

On 28 July, the CCTV operators saw the same person return to the location, driving an uninsured vehicle, which was also believed to be stolen.  

The new digital, high-definition cameras were able to capture high quality images of both the suspect and customers on each occasion, which were circulated to local police officers for identification.  

The vehicle’s registration number was entered into the council’s Automatic Number Plate Reader (ANPR) system, which allows the vehicle to be tagged with an alert if seen. CCTV operators provided the police units with live location updates of the vehicle, which was stopped in Bethnal Green. 

The individual was arrested for being in possession of Class A and B drugs as well as motoring offences including no insurance, tax or MOT, no license to drive, and the theft of motor vehicle.  

Cllr Ohid Ahmed, Lead Member for Safer Communities, said:  

“This is a fantastic result from our CCTV team in partnership with local police. Having a top-tier CCTV network is vital and our ongoing work to upgrade every camera in Tower Hamlets with the most effective digital technology will help us bring perpetrators like this to justice.  

“Here in Tower Hamlets, we have a zero-tolerance approach to drug dealing and aim to arrest a drug dealer a day. I’m pleased to see we have one more criminal off our streets, making our borough a safer place for everyone.”  

The CCTV cameras are part of an investment from the council’s Parks and Open Spaces team to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour. These new cameras will all be integrated into the borough’s main public space CCTV system, allowing the council’s control room staff 24-hour access to the footage. 

Cllr Iqbal Hossain, Lead Member for Culture and Recreation, said: 

“Our parks and open spaces are there to be enjoyed, but a small minority use them for inappropriate and anti-social behaviour. This additional parks and open spaces CCTV investment will help to tackle unwanted behaviour by assisting police investigations and acting as a deterrent for anyone who thinks they are above the law." 

The new CCTV cameras in parks are in addition to the council’s borough-wide £3.2million CCTV upgrade programme, which will see every camera in Tower Hamlets upgraded to digital technology. The upgrade is expected to be complete in autumn this year. 

To report anti-social behaviour, visit www.towerhamlets.gov.uk/asb  

To report a crime, visit www.met.police.uk 

Posted on Wednesday 10th August 2022