POLICE have written to nine people in Cumbria ordering them to resist any temptation to carry knives or similar weapons, it has been revealed.

The move was part of a North West regional crackdown on knife crime, during which officers seized 180 weapons - including knives, swords, and other prohibited weapons. It comes just few months after a successful Cumbrian knives amnesty.

From December 2 to 5,the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit (ROCU) coordinated a week-long crackdown on knife crime, working with police officers from Cumbria, Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Merseyside and North Wales.

During the week, over 100 so-called ‘cease and desist letters’ were issued across the North West. These notices aim to educate potential buyers of illegal knives and discourage further offending. Senior officers are concerned that some criminals attempt to bypass UK knife laws by importing weapons from overseas.

The initiative followed a month of activity where specialist officers intercepted parcels containing knives and weapons which are illegal in the UK. Officers from the ROCU’s Regional Disruption Team (DT) specialise in disrupting organised crime networks.

Detective Superintendent Ryan Davies from the North West ROCU said: “Thanks to this intelligence-led, co-ordinated operation a significant number of knives and weapons have been seized and won’t make it to the streets of our region, where they can cause serious harm.

“This operation is a powerful example of how collaborative working is making a difference in the fight against serious and organised crime in the North West.

“Be warned, anyone who is thinking about buying knives or weapons either online or by any other means from overseas. You are committing an offence by bringing them into the country. You face the full force of the law if you do so.”

From Cumbria, the operation led to the seizure of two knuckledusters, nine knives, and one baton.

During this year, Cumbria Police has held two week-long knife amnesty events - in September and in March this year.

In the September event, 113 weapons were handed in to the constabulary. The blades handed over included a Samurai sword, meat cleavers, throwing stars, machetes and a dagger. In March, it was revealed that 282 weapons had been handed in to the force.