A CLAMPDOWN on the danger drug mephedrone has seen police arrest eight people in York and North Yorkshire during a series of raids.

Police executed a number of warrants during the weekend operation aimed at cracking down on users and dealers of mephedrone, which became a Class B drug from midnight on Friday, marking a victory in The Press’s campaign to make it illegal.

During a raid in the Acomb area, officers arrested an 18-year-old man on suspicion of possession with intent to supply after they found a quantity of white powder, believed to be mephedrone, during a search of his home.

The jail term for possessing the drug is a maximum of five years, with dealers or traffickers of the drug facing a maximum sentence of 14 years.

Police arrested a further three people in York on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance, believed to be mephedrone, on Saturday night. Officers stopped and searched a 16-year-old, an 18-year-old man and a 19-year-old man in the Boroughbridge Road area.

A 21-year-old man in Brayton, near Selby, and a 20-year-old man in Linton-on-Ouse were arrested on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance during raids on Sunday.

A 35-year-old woman and a 21-year-old man were arrested in Harrogate on suspicion of possessing a controlled drug with intent to supply. All the drugs seized were believed to be mephedrone.

All the offenders have been bailed pending further investigations.

The arrests follow two large seizures of mephedrone in York last week in which three kilograms of the drug with a street value of about £30,000 was recovered.

Assistant Chief Constable Tim Madgwick, of North Yorkshire Police, said: “We are taking the threat of mephedrone extremely seriously and we are determined to bring anyone dealing this substance to justice.

“As we have demonstrated over the weekend we will be acting swiftly on community intelligence, and will be concentrating specifically on people who intend to import and supply mephedrone for use on our streets.”