POLICE operations to target prostitution, drug dealing and anti-social behaviour have led to lower crime levels in Bournemouth East, according to police.

December 2013 saw the fewest number of crimes in a month in five years at 334 compared with a peak of 580 in August 2009.

Figures covering April last year to date show an overall fall in crime of 10 per cent.

Neighbourhood Inspector Chris Weeks said: “I am encouraged by the latest crime statistics and believe this is due to the numerous initiatives taking place in the area to combat crime and anti-social behaviour. There is still work to be done and I am reminding residents to make sure they take some simple crime prevention steps to avoid becoming a victim of crime.”