POLICE using new laws have raided and shut down six suspected drug dens in Huddersfield.
The raids - the first of their kind in the town - took place across Huddersfield yesterday, leading to 11 arrests.
Under the new Anti-Social Behaviour Act police have the powers to effectively shut a house if they suspect it has been used for the unlawful use, production or supply of class A drugs and the house is "associated with the occurrence of disorder or serious nuisance to members of the public".
Police smashed their way into six homes in Golcar, Milnsbridge, Moldgreen, Highburton, Crosland Moor and Thornton Lodge.
The aim was to close down drug dens where police believe drugs are sold and used and also get drug users into treatment.
Offenders commit crime to fund drug addictions, which is why police hope to get as many into projects to help them kick their habits.
The houses that are shut down means visitors are barred - and often the people living in them are evicted.
The final decision on what happens at each of the six houses will be made by a district judge sitting at Huddersfield Magistrates' Court today.
Police community support officers were in the six areas last night taking more statements from grateful residents about the activities at the suspected drugs dens to add to the evidence before the judge today.
One of the houses shut down was a terraced home on Maple Avenue on Golcar's Sycamore estate.
A young man and woman were taken away by police early yesterday.
The door was damaged where it had been forced open and rubbish was strewn around outside.
People on the estate spoke, but none wanted to give their names.
One woman said: "There is a big problem with drugs on this estate. Everyone knows what's going on and where."
She said she was not surprised the house had been raided.
"There are lots of comings and goings there," she said.
Kirklees police commander Chief Supt Barry South said: "The action we have taken in Kirklees over the last two days was the result of a lot of planning.
"This is the picture of things to come."
The operation involved officers from Kirklees Neighbourhood Policing Teams supported by officers from the Operational Support Unit.
All those arrested were detained on suspicion of drugs offences and taken to Huddersfield police station for questioning.
Similar raids at seven homes in Mirfield, Ravensthorpe and Mirfield on Monday netted 16 arrests.
Quantities of suspected class A and C drugs have been recovered from homes during the operation.
Notices were stuck on homes in Huddersfield explaining that West Yorkshire Police will today apply to Huddersfield magistrates to shut the houses for up to three months under Anti-Social Behaviour legislation.
The arrest days also involved other organisations such as the Drugs Intervention Programme and Kirklees Safer Stronger Communities Partnership.
Chief Insp Keith Hallas, head of the Neighbourhood Policing Teams in Kirklees, said: "This operation will continue across the Kirklees District and where the community has brought to our attention premises being used as drug dens we will take positive action to disrupt this activity and get these people into treatment.
"The action involved addresses in a number of different areas which shows that the problem of properties being used as drug dens is not specific to one particular area.
"The feedback we have had from local residents is very positive and the operation represents a significant impact into high volume crime in the Kirklees area.
"Police are demonstrating that we will not tolerate this sort of behaviour and the community is clearly pleased by our actions.
"Communities should feel reassured because we are getting individuals into treatment, which is proving to be successful in reducing crime."