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Suella hits the shops: Operation Vulcan cops joined by home secretary

Suella Braverman joined officers from Greater Manchester Police as they clamp down on the counterfeit goods trade in Cheetham hill.

Image: Suella Braverman & GMP Officers (Supplied by GMP)

Cheetham Hill and the 'Strangeways' area have long been synonymous with the illegal trade and production of counterfeit designer goods.


Greater Manchester Police have been fighting back for years with shops being raided, closed, and simply reopening days later.

Image: Greater Manchester Police

One shop owner told Shock Radio News that last summer there were over 300 shops on the road that runs parallel to HMP Manchester.


The new organised crime strategy –‘clear, hold, build’ will see police pursue the gang members to clear the area, hold the location so another gang cannot take its place, and eventually help regenerate the area.


While many believe the counterfeit goods trade to be a victimless crime, Shock Radio News was told by GMP that the money made by these shops is helping to fund other organised crime groups, drugs, prostitution, and even terrorism.


Detective Superintendent Neil Blackwood who is leading Operation Vulcan said: “Organised crime is at the very centre of the problems our communities are facing and it’s bringing violent crime and anti-social behaviour to the area.


"We’ve seen rival gangs fighting in broad daylight, breaking into each other’s shops to tax their goods, dealing drugs in front of members of the public, and intimidating legitimate businesses."


"We aren’t just targeting the low-level members, we’re working our way up the chain, dismantling their enterprises, and seizing millions of pounds worth of counterfeit clothing and hundreds and thousands of pounds as we go.”




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