Police have charged a number of people including Benefits Street ‘star’ Black Dee over drug offences and possession of AMMUNITION following raids on the notorious road.
Black Dee, real name Samora Roberts, 32, who features in the explosive Channel 4 show, was charged with conspiracy to supply a class B controlled drug, conspiracy to supply a class A controlled drug, crack cocaine, possession of a Class A controlled drug, diamorphine and possession of ammunition of a firearm without a certificate.
Officers from West Midlands Police swooped on the controversial street in June 2013 following concerns raised by people in the local community.
On Wednesday seven people were charged with a number of offences and have all been bailed to appear before Birmingham Magistrates Court in February 6.
Among the people charged, six, including Black Dee, live on James Turner Street in Winson Green, Birmingham, they are, Tina Thomas, 46, who was charged with conspiracy to supply Class B drugs, cannabis and possession of ammunition without a certificate.
Charlene Wilson, 29, was charged with conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, crack cocaine, and Class B drugs, cannabis, and possession of diamorphine.
Ian Wright, 38, was charged with conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, crack cocaine, and conspiracy to supply Class B drugs, cannabis.
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Monique Walker, 28, was charged with conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, crack cocaine.
Marvin Scott, 37, was charged with conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, crack cocaine.
Omari George, 20, from Handsworth, Birmingham, who does not live on James Turner Street was charged with Conspiracy to supply Crack A drugs crack cocaine and Class B drugs cannabis.
Benefits Street debuted on Monday, January 6 with 4.3 million viewers – a record-high for a Channel 4 week-night show.
Despite the high figures, the show has been criticised for portraying some locals as scroungers, drug addicts and thieves.
The first episode followed a resident as he went shoplifting and appeared to show how spare bedrooms were being used to grow cannabis.
‘Stars’ of the documentary have complained that the programme-makers misled them by saying the series was going to be about community spirit in the street.
The residents also claim producers bribed them to take part with booze and fags – claims which were denied by Channel 4.
Some of Britain’s biggest charities have also branded the show “extreme and sensational” while West Midlands Police are considering launching an investigation into criminality shown on camera.
Channel 4 and Ofcom, the broadcasting watchdog, have received hundreds of complaints and there have been alleged death threats against participants.
But a Channel 4 spokesman said Benefits Street is “a sympathetic, human and objective portrayal of how people are coping with continuing austerity and cuts in benefits”.
On Friday, it was revealed by Channel 4 that a vulnerable resident featured on the show, alcoholic, Fungi, real name James Clarke,44, had been removed from the street.
A Channel 4 spokesman said: “The production team are in contact with Fungi, they know where he is and that he is well. He has moved from the area for personal reasons.”