SIXTEEN gang members causing anti-social behaviour on the South Acton Estate have been sentenced to more than 35 years in prison.

Many of them are from Acton, as well as Ealing, Hanwell, Hounslow and Harefield.

Over the last five months, officers from Trident Central Gangs Unit, Ealing Gang Unit, South Acton Safer Neighbourhoods Team and neighbourhood police have been tackling gang violence, drug dealing and anti-social behaviour on the South Acton estate in Operation Peltra.

Police carried out simultaneous raids over two days in July, targeting those linked to drug dealing on the estate.

Warrants were executed across London, including Ealing, Harrow, Hounslow and Hillingdon boroughs as well as Gravesend in Kent. A total of 17 arrests were made and 16 charged. The offenders had more than 80 drug supply offences between them.

All 16 pleaded guilty at their first hearing at Harrow Crown Court.

Det Supt Tim Champion, of Trident Central Gangs Unit, said: "This is a great example of the proactive work Trident conducts with boroughs to tackle violent gang members involved in the supply of harmful drugs.

"By successfully removing the negative role models and their gang associates within the local community, we are hoping to prevent young people from joining gangs in the first place.

"Being in prison it is not a positive experience. There is nothing fashionable about having a criminal record. It only makes it harder to get a job or into further education.

“There is nothing untouchable about being involved in violence and crime. It can lead to getting arrested, sent to prison, seriously injured or even killed.

"We cannot tackle gang violence alone. We are working with partners, agencies and communities to offer ways out of gangs and divert young people away from what can become a very destructive path."

Sgt Sean Snaith from South Acton Safer Neighbourhoods Team, said: “Since the conclusion of this operation, South Acton Ward team has seen a dramatic decrease in drug-related crime and anti-social behaviour.”