DEALERS are disguising themselves as key workers to deliver drugs.
They are posing as bin men and courier firm drivers — or even pretending to make vital food shopping trips so they can sell drugs in supermarket car parks.
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British Transport Police say county lines drug gangs are ignoring the lockdown to send young couriers all over the country by train to make sales — with 79 arrests in less than a month.
Detective Superintendent Gareth Williams, of the BTP county lines task force, said:
“We’ve not seen a reduction. If you’ve got a 15-year-old from London in Bournemouth in the afternoon but he hasn’t got an essential purpose, then they’re easy to spot.”
Email con smashed
Police have smashed an email scam by a gang of fraudsters posing as coronavirus Good Samaritans.
The mob sent emails and texts claiming to be from trusted organisations offering help or tax refunds for those in financial need.
They included links to bogus websites where victims were conned into revealing bank or credit card details and passwords.
Several arrests have been made in Leicestershire, Dorset and South London.
Detective Chief Inspector Gary Robinson said: “We’re cracking down on criminals using the Covid-19 outbreak to defraud the public.”
Lynne Owens, director general of the National Crime Agency, added:
“They are seeking to deal drugs in supermarket car parks and to portray themselves as key workers to prevent being stopped by police.”
A dealer arrested last week with £57,000 worth of cocaine in his car claimed he was a key worker when stopped in Brecon, South Wales. Benjamin Evans, who admitted possession, was wearing a high-vis jacket and claimed to be heading home from a night-shift.
In some areas, the price of cocaine has trebled and dealers are using increasing numbers of vulnerable kids as couriers to satisfy demand.
Youth worker Matthew Norwood said the lockdown had made things easier.
He added: “Kids are using social distancing as an excuse to prevent police officers asking questions.”
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