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21.07.23 – Police look for witnesses, Operation CeCe Seizures

Written by on 22 July 2023

Staffordshire Police are appealing for information after a boy was assaulted by a man in Stoke-on-Trent.

At around 3.30pm on Tuesday 31 January, the victim, an 11-year-old boy, was walking on Marston Grove, next to Leek New Road, when he was approached by a man who was driving a car.

The man made a comment to the victim before getting out of the car and assaulting the boy.

The man then drove away from the area, leaving the boy with swelling and bruising to his face at the scene.

Officers have been speaking to a number of people and have been reviewing the available CCTV footage from the area at the time.

After completing other lines of enquiry, Police are now asking the public for any further information they may have which can help us find the person responsible.

We believe he was travelling in silver car. He is described as Asian, in his mid-20s and was wearing all black clothing at the time of the incident.

Anyone who witnessed the assault or those who may have CCTV or dashcam footage of the area at the time are asked to get in touch.

Contact Staffordshire Police through Live Chat on their website – www.staffordshire.police.uk – or call 101, quoting incident number 347 of 1 February.

To report anonymously, call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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An ongoing operation to tackle the sale of illegal tobacco and vapes in Staffordshire has made seizures worth £26,810.

Four raids, at premises in Newcastle and the Staffordshire Moorlands, resulted in the seizure of 33,000 illicit cigarettes, 4.48kg of illicit hand rolling tobacco and 658 illegal vapes. These items were discovered in sophisticated hiding places in the premises.

Staffordshire County Council’s Trading Standards officers were supported by Staffordshire Police, Immigration Compliance and Enforcement team and BWY Canine a specialist dog search team.  The raids were part of Operation CeCe, a National Trading Standards initiative in partnership with HMRC to tackle the supply and sale of illegal tobacco.

Victoria Wilson, Cabinet Member responsible for Trading Standards at Staffordshire County Council said: “Taking illegal tobacco and vapes off the streets remains a priority for our Trading Standards team and this latest raid shows that sadly some traders are still prepared to break the law.

“The availability of illegal tobacco and e-cigarettes damages local communities, is harmful to those using them and helps fund criminal gangs.  It’s something we’re working hard with our partners to tackle and we’re pleased with the latest seizures and removing the items from sale.

“We are also seeing a steady increase in the availability of illegal vapes and the sale of them to young people which is a worrying trend. Anyone with information about the sale of counterfeit goods in Staffordshire should call the Fight the Fakes hotline on 01785 330356.”

In the last financial year (April 2022 to March 2023), Staffordshire County Council’s Trading Standards service have uncovered more than 1,000,000 illegal cigarettes and 116kg of illegal tobacco.   The estimated street value for the year’s haul is around £325,000.