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New investigation tool will help in county lines gangs battle


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Evidence gathering tech letting officers do days worth of work in seconds.

New investigation tool will help in county lines gangs battle


Date - 16th September 2018
By - Sophie Garrod - Police Oracle


Investigators are using a tool to take down dangerous county line dealers who are contributing to a surge in violent crime.

County lines activity has become an increasingly popular way of dealing drugs around the country involving gangs grooming and using children or vulnerable young people to traffic drugs.

With a new PC app called Chorus Investigator, frontline officers and investigators can complete work which would usually take hours - or even days - in seconds.

The tool collates all forms of evidence from ANPR data and call data to online chat or device downloads, then quickly identifies connections within cases and creates evidential reports and maps.

Officers will be able to solve cases that might ordinarily take weeks to investigate or even remain unsolved, as well as avoiding disclosure issues as all evidence is presented in a clearer form.

Earlier this year it was reported by the Home Office that nine out of 10 crimes result in no charge.

By simplifying the data analysis processes, anyone within a law enforcement role will be able to swiftly analyse case data in order to complete investigations regardless of the type or size of the case.

The tool also enables investigating officers to access information outside their force area which is crucial for effective cross border working - making it particularly useful when tackling county lines gangs.

In April, then Home Secretary Amber Rudd unveiled a new Serious Violence Strategy where she warned exploitative gangs are spreading and the degree of violence exerted by them is extreme with cases of murder and torture.

Crack-cocaine is the drug most linked to violence and its production at source has risen since 2013, whilst the purity of the drug increased from 36 per cent in 2013 to 71 per cent in 2016.

It is thought these factors, coupled with an increase in users, have driven drug-selling groups to pursue new markets via county lines.

The number of murders where either the suspect or victim were known "to be involved in using or dealing illicit drugs" increased from 50 to 57 per cent in the year to 2016-17, with crack cocaine markets having strong links to serious violence, according to the strategy.

The government has allocated £3.6million to support development of a new National County Lines Coordination Centre which will launch on September 20.

Boyd Mulvey, CEO of Chorus said: "Technology, and specifically, fast analysis of data is key to helping stretched police forces in the UK battle all crime; from the increasing volumes of violent and organised crime to county lines. Chorus Investigator is game-changing for forces as it’s now possible to carry out a level of investigation which has not been possible due to time constraints and lack of analysts within the force.”

A National Police Chiefs’ Council spokesman said: “The issue of county lines has long been recognised as a serious issue by a number of police forces.

“New funding announced earlier this year for the National County Lines Co-ordination Centre will help us to target those organised gangs and groups who exploit young people and cause violent crimes to be committed on our streets.

“Tackling violent crime isn’t something police forces can do alone – it requires a whole system approach.”

Four forces are currently using Chorus Investigator and it is being trialled by a further 11.

View On Police Oracle

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Awesome, hopefully! 

Using intelligent analytical software to thrash this all out is a great idea. I have heard of similar projects applied to scientific papers which spot trends and discoveries that were unknown 

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