A package of high-purity cocaine with a street value of more than £25,000 has been seized by police after dogs sniffed it out at a post office in the north.
The discovery was made as part of a nationwide County Lines crackdown, with officers from across the UK working to seize drugs and stop dealers before they could affect vulnerable communities.
Across the week-long campaign, officers in Scotland arrested 20 people and seized more than £20,000, along with a cache of weapons and a number of other items.
In the north, the operation involved putting sniffer dogs to work in post offices.
This led to the find of the cocaine package – which then sent officers to a property in Simpson Place in Dingwall, where they discovered £40,000 of cannabis.
A 32-year-old man was arrested as a result, and inquiries are ongoing.
A separate raid in Balloan Road in Inverness led to the discovery of £1,000 in cash, mobile devices, £2,500 worth of heroin and £1,800 worth of crack cocaine.
Six arrested in north-east
Meanwhile, six men were arrested over the course of the week in the north-east.
A 36-year-old and a 45-year-old were arrested for possession of heroin after a warrant was executed on Stafford Street in Aberdeen.
In the Summerhill area of the city, a 27-year-old was found to be in possession of heroin after he made off from the officers who stopped his car, and was arrested.
A 42-year-old was arrested for being in possession of crack cocaine at a house on the city’s Granton Place.
And also in the north-east, two men aged 31 and 25 years old were arrested for possessing cannabis, with officers seizing a total of £1,000 from them.
The week of action specifically targeted County Lines dealers, who are based in larger cities but expand their operations into small towns.
Assistant Chief Constable Pat Campbell, said: “County Lines gangs are not welcome in Scotland.
“They groom and exploit the most vulnerable people in our communities including children and young people. People are intimidated, coerced, threatened and force into storing or selling drugs.”
Over the course of the week, which was co-ordinated by the National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC), Scottish police officers engaged with 29 vulnerable people and visited 64 properties believed to be used for “cuckooing”, where dealers take over the home of a vulnerable person.
Among the items seized by officers were a Taser, two machetes and two large knives, a number of mobile phones, a laptop and almost £500 of counterfeit cash.
‘Hostile environment for criminals’
ACC Campbell added: “Our officers remain absolutely committed to working with our partners to reduce the exploitation of vulnerable people and safeguard individuals who may be at risk, and pursue offenders.
“Together we will provide support to those targeted by unscrupulous criminals to reduce ongoing risk and enable recovery, and we will continue to make Scotland a hostile environment to those who seek to engage in criminal activity.
“As ever, I would urge anyone with concerns to report them to Police Scotland, or alternatively to Crimestoppers anonymously.”