Over 200 Arrests At Parklife 2012 Nationally As Police Sniff Out Drugs

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Over 200 Arrests At Parklife 2012 Nationally As Police Sniff Out Drugs

With Parklife 2012 coming to a close, the yearly festival, which kicks off Australia’s summer of music events, attracted over 20,000 Melbourne fans over the weekend.

Following on from the Sydney Parklife which attracted over 35,000 festival-goers and Brisbane’s 30,000 strong opening last weekend, which saw the likes of Australian talents The Presets, Tame Impala and Hermitude taking the stage alongside international draw-cards Nero, Plan B and Passion Pit for the one day event.

Melbourne Police however, are disappointed with the Parklife crowds over the weekend, having issued over 40 arrests for drug related offenses at the Victorian leg of the nationwide dance event Parklife.

With the aid of a Passive Alert Detection (PAD) dog operation, police performed a crack down on Parklife attendees attempting to bring illicit materials into the music event.

In a report from News Ltd Acting Senior Sergeant Mark Pilkington was alarmed at the number of festival goers not taking on board warnings issued by police in the lead up to Melbourne’s Parklife at the  Sidney Myer Music Bowl.

“It’s always disappointing to find people bringing illicit drugs to these events, but history tells us that’s what’s going to happen” said Pilkington.

The Senior Sergeant, who was also influential in the apprehension of over 200 hundred people earlier this year at Melbourne’s leg of the Creamfields tour, helped carry out a similar blitz on drug related offenses at the Melbourne music event. The major offenders were those possessing substances such as ecstasy, cocaine, amphetamines, ice and cannabis.

Senior Sergeant Pilkington urged revellers to consider the consequences of being caught sneaking drugs into music festivals, implying the future ramifications a drug offense may bring on, including the effects on future employment and international travel opportunities.

Overall, the Senior Sergeant was ‘disappointed’ and unhappy with the number of revelers pushing their luck, compared to other states however, the Melbourne leg of the Parklife tour saw a relatively low number of police issued arrests, with Sydney’s leg producing over 130 arrests, include 117 drug related apprehensions according to the Herald Sun.

Meanwhile, the WA Today reports that Perth’s Parklife this year had just 20 arrests, a drop from last year’s 25. But Pilkington’s grave stance over the 40 plus arrests contrasts with that of the 170 strong force of police at the Sydney leg, who were ‘happy’ overall with the behavior of patrons at the Centennial Park event.

Speaking to the Herald Sun, Superintendent Gavin Dengate said he was pleased with the response by festival goers, saying “Our message was clear – be sensible, know your limits, and look out for your mates; and it was great to see the majority of revelers doing just that.”

Dengate added that the behavior of most of the festival patrons should be commended for their cooperation. “The overwhelming majority of festival goers knew how to have fun and behave responsibly, which helped shape a great atmosphere.”

The Police Superintendent also praised event management, saying: “The festival’s promoters should also be acknowledged for working hard with Police during the planning stages to ensure alcohol incidents were kept to a minimum, which helped to create a safe and enjoyable environment for revelers.”

It’s a stark contrast not only to the Victorian Police Force’s attitudes to festival goers, but also their own efforts earlier this year at July’s Splendour In The Grass, which saw 400 people of the 20,000 in attendance arrested in drugs-related offences.

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