THREE properties have been ordered to close as part of police plans to “make Salisbury inhospitable” to drug dealers.

The Salisbury homes, which police believed were being used for the supply of class A drugs, were served with three-month closure notices in August.

Magistrates ordered that 8 Bedwin Street, 130 Essex Square and 4 Osbourne House, Victoria Road, be closed for three months, at Salisbury Magistrates’ Court on August 17.

The order means anyone who does not live at the premises cannot enter them, and could be arrested if they do.

Wiltshire Police and Wiltshire Council applied to the courts for the closure orders after concerns that the properties could be being used for cuckooing.

Cuckooing is a term used for drug dealers, who come from big cities into rural areas and target vulnerable people to get them involved in the supply of drugs.

Drug dealers from metropolitan areas target the vulnerable users in rural areas, and offer to pay their rent, buy them cigarettes, alcohol and drugs, or threaten them with violence until they will join the drug supply chain.

It comes after drug raids across the city in July led to 25 arrests, under three-phase Operation Karine, which was started last November.

Assistant Chief Constable Kier Pritchard previously told the Journal the operation was “really successful” and Inspector Pete Sparrow said the focus must now turn to the “long-term solution” of tackling drug use in the city.

Wiltshire Police has outlined plans for a “twin track” approach with local agencies such as Turning Point, GPs and doctors’ surgeries and Wiltshire Council.

Insp Sparrow said Salisbury would not be a “soft touch” when it came to drug offending, adding: “The message that I’ve been trying to put out is that we’re trying to make Salisbury inhospitable.

“I don’t want people to think that you can come here from a big city and do whatever you want without there being some action taken.