County Lines and Criminal Exploitation
County Lines is where illegal drugs are transported from one area to another, often across police and local authority boundaries (although not exclusively), usually by children or vulnerable people who are coerced into it by gangs.
The ‘County Line’ is the mobile phone line used to take the orders of drugs. Importing areas (areas where the drugs are taken to) are reporting increased levels of violence and weapons related crimes as a result of this trend.
Children as young as 12 years old have been exploited into carrying drugs for gangs. This can involve children being trafficked away from their home area, staying in accommodation and selling and manufacturing drugs.
Responding to concerns about county lines exploitation
If you’re worried that a child or young person might be or is at risk of being exploited by a county lines gang, you must share your concerns.
If you think a child is in immediate danger, contact the police on 999. If you’re worried about a child but they are not in immediate danger, you should share your concerns.
Contact the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you require advice or general information please get in touch
Youth Unity work in strict confidence to offer impartial advice and signpost