Home Secretary James Cleverly will this week announce a crackdown on Line of Duty-style ‘cuckooing crime’.

He will unveil a new stand-alone offence to target people who take over the home of a vulnerable person to commit specific crimes.

And anyone found guilty of so-called ‘cuckooing’ will face a maximum sentence of five years in jail, an unlimited fine or both.

The Home Office pointed out that the crime – often linked to ‘county lines’ drug gangs – was depicted in the hit BBC series Line of Duty and Happy Valley.

The Home Office pointed out that the crime ¿ often linked to 'county lines' drug gangs - was depicted in the hit BBC series Line of Duty (pictured) and Happy Valley

The Home Office pointed out that the crime – often linked to ‘county lines’ drug gangs – was depicted in the hit BBC series Line of Duty (pictured) and Happy Valley  

Ciera Hulatt (pictured) was given a 'community protection notice' after she was found in a number of homes that had been 'cuckooed'

Ciera Hulatt (pictured) was given a ‘community protection notice’ after she was found in a number of homes that had been ‘cuckooed’

Sources admitted that the Government had previously resisted calls for a new specific offence as there were a range of existing offences that could already be applied to cuckooing.

But they said that Ministers had listened to concerns and accepted that a new standalone offence would help ensure offenders are held to account for the harm done to victims of the crime.

And last night, Mr Cleverly said: ‘Cuckooing is a vile practice where cruel and opportunistic criminals prey on the most vulnerable.

See also  Teacher spared jail for supplying cocaine as part of a crime ring is banned from the classroom for three years

‘That is why we will be tabling an amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill to introduce a criminal offence of cuckooing, ensuring our laws reflect the true impact this behaviour has on victims.’

He added: ‘This is another step we are taking as a government to crack down on the misery, violence and exploitation caused by county line gangs.

Jazz trumpeter William Algar, 53, was chopped up in his own bathtub after his home had been taken over by drug dealers

Jazz trumpeter William Algar, 53, was chopped up in his own bathtub after his home had been taken over by drug dealers

‘Since April 2022, we have taken the fight to county lines gangs, closing over 2,500 county lines and delivering over 6,000 major and moderate organised crime group disruptions.

‘Our plan to crack down on illegal drugs through a whole-system approach is working, as set out in our 10-year Drug Strategy, backed by a record £3 billion funding over three years – including a new target to smash another 1,000 county lines by August.’

The Home Secretary also paid tribute to senior Tory MP Sir Iain Duncan Smith for highlighting the need to tackle cuckooing.

Last night, Sir Iain said: that he and other MPs had originally pushed for a change in the law ‘because vulnerable people have suffered as they have had their houses taken over by criminals who have used their homes for vile criminal activities such as illegal drug dealing and setting up brothels.

‘I am pleased the Government has engaged with us and agreed to put this into law.’

When trouble comes to stay: Real-life cuckooing cases 

 

 

Merseyside Police conducting a raid on a property earlier this year

Merseyside Police conducting a raid on a property earlier this year

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Murder charge for Tyler Myers in deadly biker gang shooting

Tyler Myers faces murder charges in a biker gang shootout at a…

TOM UTLEY: The response my wife and I have had to our burglary proves most Britons are kind and full of compassion

Day nine since our burglary, which I described here last Friday, and…

Missing University of Missouri student Riley Strain found dead in Nashville river

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TCD) — Officials recently found the body of 22-year-old University…

Man arrested over factory fire in Sydney’s south-west

A man will face court after he was charged over a suspicious…