Policing Minister and MP for North West Hampshire Kit Malthouse MP said he is focusing on making the streets safer after the police “made great strides in dismantling County Lines”.

Acknowledging that gangs are using vulnerable people to move drugs through our transport system in Basingstoke and Andover, the MP said the police is responding by making hundres of arrests and seizing drugs, cash and mobile phones.

Mr Malthouse was speaking before a crime summit in Andover today (Friday, June 24) to discuss concerns and progress around drug crime (county lines), anti-social behaviour, and rural crime. 

He said: “We’re progressing well towards recruiting 20,000 new police officers across the country, more than 13,500 at the last count, and our neighbourhoods in Hampshire are getting a decent chunk. They will be out in the community and they will be visible — best placed to deal with persistent crime and anti-social behaviour.

“We’re introducing fitting punishments to drive down burglary and robbery offences such as unpaid street cleaning and litter picking as part of the sentence. We are working flat out to cut crime, but of course we have more to do. I look forward to hosting this summit and looking at what more we can do to make our neighbourhoods even safer.”

The crime summit at Andover Guildhall, is open for registered invitees. 

There will be a panel discussion with Siobhan Down, CEO of Yellow Brick Road Projects; James Fitzgerald, County Adviser, NFU, Hampshire & The Isle of Wight; Donna Jones, Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire; Inspector Chris Taylor, Hampshire Police; Chief Superintendent Kory Thorne, Hampshire Police. 

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