Police hand out thousands of lockdown fines as drug dealers impersonate key workers

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A total of 3,203 fines have been issued to those found to breaching lockdown laws in the past two weeks. Lynne Owens, director-general of the National Crime Agency, said county lines drug dealers were frustrated at the travel ban, and have been using a disturbing trick to try and carry on selling drugs.

The NCA director general revealed drug dealers had been disguising themselves as key workers to avoid being caught flouting lockdown laws while selling drugs.

Speaking to Sky news, she said: “They are dealing drugs in supermarket car parks and passing themselves off as key workers to try to avoid police.”

She also said a Polish lorry driver stopped by Border Force officers at Dover on Tuesday night had 14kg of cocaine hidden in a consignment of face masks.

Police figures show that anti-social behaviour as a whole is up by 59 percent.

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Police have issued thousands of fines for alleged breaches of coronavirus lockdown laws (Image: GETTY)

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Drug dealers have been selling in supermarket car parks to avoid getting caught flouting lockdown rules (Image: GETTY)

They have said this is largely due to people ignoring coronavirus restrictions.

Sara Glen, of the NPCC, said eight out of ten of the 3,203 people fined for breaking lockdown rules were men, two-thirds of them aged 18-34.

She said some 60 percent were white, insisting that police were not acting disproportionately.

Despite the increase in anti-social behaviour, police bosses are confident forces are equipped to deal with the worrying trend of coronavirus related crime.

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County lines drug dealers were frustrated at the travel ban, and have been trying to pass off as key workers (Image: GETTY)

Martin Hewitt, chair of the National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC), said forces were “in a good position” to deal with enforcing COVID-19 restrictions.

This is in spite of 10 percent staff absence across forces.

He said most crime had fallen – with rape down 37 percent, serious assault 27 percent, burglaries down 37 percent and vehicle crime down 34 percent.

However, domestic abuse is up by 3 percent.

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Police figures show that anti-social behaviour as a whole is up by 59 percent (Image: GETTY)

Countdown blunder: Rachel Riley's huge mistake after replacing Carol Vorderman exposed

Police bosses are confident forces are equipped to deal with the worrying trend of coronavirus related crime (Image: getty)

Of the 3,205 fines issued for flouting lockdown laws, police were forced to scrap 39 of them.

These were fines given to 16 and 17-year-olds before police discovered they had no powers to target children under the new laws.

The figures were given in a briefing by police chiefs who said criminals were having to adapt to the new restrictions.

There has also been a worrying trend of attacks against key workers.

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Social distancing (Image: EXPRESS)

Speaking to ITV, the Director of Public Prosecutions revealed emergency workers have been facing daily coronavirus related attacks.

This includes some people even spitting and coughing in the faces of NHS staff and paramedics

Max Hill QC said there have been dozens of reports of police, NHS and other frontline workers being attacked by members of the public.

This includes workers being deliberately coughed at and verbally attacked during the global pandemic.

Coronavirus related crimes, where Covid-19 is used to threaten emergency and essential workers, is a worrying trend, with police now having to use spit guards to protect themselves.

ITV News spoke to Amy Hall, 28, who described popping out between shifts to buy her mum flowers for mother’s day, only to be spat at in a car park.

She said her attacker called her a “virus spreader”.

There have also been reports of two nurses working in critical care at the Inverclyde Royal Hospital, Scotland having their cars keyed.


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