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Report concerns about county lines and cuckooing

‘County lines’ is the name given to gangs and organised criminal networks who move illegal drugs out of bigger cities and in to smaller towns.

These gangs sometimes take over the home of a vulnerable person and use the property as a base for drug dealing. This is known as ‘cuckooing’.

Victims of cuckooing are often intimidated, exploited or threatened with violence.

County lines gangs target people who are vulnerable, such as:

  • young people
  • people who live on their own, or isolated from others
  • people living with addiction issues
  • people suffering from mental health issues

How to spot possible victims

You may see changes in someone’s behaviour, such as:

  • changes in daily routines – going out at unsociable hours, or not going out at all
  • being secretive about who they are talking to
  • changes in emotional or physical wellbeing

You may also notice more people visiting a property or unfamiliar vehicles outside a property.

Report concerns

If you are concerned that someone may be a victim of county lines or cuckooing, report it:

Immediate danger

Call 999 if you think someone is in immediate danger.

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