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Last Updated: Sunday, 16 April 2006, 06:49 GMT 07:49 UK
Eleven arrests in club drugs raid
Police outside the Fridge nightclub
Scores of police took part in the raid on The Fridge
Eleven people were arrested by police during a raid on alleged drug dealing at a south London nightclub.

About 200 officers were involved in an operation at The Fridge club in Brixton, targeting class A drugs.

Police said the raid followed a two-month intelligence operation focusing on the alleged supply of cocaine, amphetamines and ecstasy.

On Saturday a 29-year-old man was arrested in Harrow, north London, on suspicion of supplying class A drugs.

Police said they believed him to be a "main dealer in the vicinity of the club".

Four men and two women were arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class A substances.

Drugs seized

Another five people were arrested on suspicion of possession of Class A substances. They all remained in custody and were being questioned during the day.

Drugs believed to be ecstasy and cocaine were also seized, as well as a large amount of money.

Four people received formal warnings for possession of a small amount of cannabis, and a further nine were found to be in possession of a small amount of Class A substances.

Police arrest man at the club
Eleven people were arrested during the raid

The raid, codenamed Atuna, started at about 2325 BST on Saturday and was triggered by a command of "attack, attack" as scores of officers burst in through the front door while others covered the rear.

They took control of the foyer and the dance floor, turned the music off and the lights up.

Plain-clothes officers, operating undercover, were inside the club as the raid began. Some of the revellers were then brought into the foyer and searched for drugs.

The raid came as hundreds of clubbers were arriving for the start of the venue's "Polysexual" night, which had been due to run until 1400 BST on Sunday.

Chief Superintendent Martin Bridger, Borough Commander for Lambeth, apologised to club-goers but said police would not tolerate the criminal behaviour of the drug dealers.

People come to Brixton to have fun and enjoy the nightlife, they do not want to come to clubs where they are being peddled drugs
John Roberts

Mr Bridger indicated that the venue's licence would now be reviewed. No one at The Fridge was immediately available for comment.

John Roberts, the Metropolitan Police Authority's lead member for Lambeth, said the operation was part of a wider attempt to end the misery that drug dealing caused to the community.

Mr Roberts said: "By listening to the community and responding to their concern we can tackle drug dealing in Lambeth.

He said the operation was "part of a much bigger picture" which involved targeting "the anti-social criminality that drug dealing breeds and the misery that is causes".

He added: "People come to Brixton to have fun and enjoy the nightlife, they do not want to come to clubs where they are being peddled drugs."


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