Police crack down on anti-social behaviour in Barking town centre

A police crackdown on anti-social behaviour saw officers team up with trading standards to target the sale of fake goods in the town centre.

Operation Norton, part of the Summer anti social behaviour initiative, saw police take to Barking high street and station parade in a bid to tackle counterfeit goods sellers, truancy and the carrying of weapons, on Thursday.

It follows a raid on suspected drug dealers in the town centre last month, which led to the arrest of nine people.

Police claim the irresponsible sales of goods, such as alcohol, are proven “generators of crime” and anti-social behaviour.

Licensing officer Andrew O’Connor said: “There is little value for money where counterfeit goods are concerned and in some cases the fake produces can be harmful.

“We are working hard to ensure that all licensed vendors take responsibility for making sure that harmful or age appropriate goods don’t fall into the wrong hands and subsequently fuel anti-social behaviour. “

A knife arch was erected at the entrance to Barking rail station but no weapons were found, said police. Equally, test purchases of knives in local shops showed that sellers were obeying the law on not selling knives to under 18s.

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A search of the town centre also found no weapons, however it did yield some hidden stashes of drugs.

Cabinet member for crime, justice and communities, Cllr Jeanne Alexander, said: “This borough has low levels of crime, but operations such as this, help us to crackdown on the minority of people who try and spoil it for others.”