New South Wales Deputy Police Commissioner Dave owen at Tweed Heads Police Station yesterday.
New South Wales Deputy Police Commissioner Dave owen at Tweed Heads Police Station yesterday. Patrick Williams / Tweed Daily News

No Rally shenanigans: Police

NEW South Wales Deputy police Commissioner Dave Owen has a stern warning to anyone planning to sabotage the Repco Rally Australia -Do Not Be stupid.

Mr Owen attended a meeting with Tweed-byron police commander Superintendent Michael Kenny at the Tweed Heads Police station yesterday morning to discuss police plans for the upcoming event.

He said while he respected the rights of protestors at the event, taking it too far could be dangerous for them, spectators and rally drivers.

"While people have the right to protest, lighting small fires or distracting the rally drivers in anyway is absolutely stupid," he said.

"It's a criminal offence and I will make sure they are prosecuted for it.

"I won't be risking the safety of my officers."

Mr Owen revealed details on plans to use a police helicopter, drug sniffer dogs, trail bikes and 4WD vehicles to patrol the event.

Supt Kenny said public order police and extra highway patrol officers have been called in.

"There are some hard-to-reach areas but we will be able to get to them," Supt Kenny said.

"Footage from the helicopters filming the rally will broadcast straight to the command centre to keep an eye on everything."

Mr Owen said he support the rally.

"I have been nothing but impressed with it so far. Nothing has been left to chance," he said.

"It will bring in a lot of money to the area and I'm personally looking forward to the event.

"We just want to make sure everyone has a good time."

Mr Owen encouraged protestors to notify police of intended actions such as hanging banners before the event.

"If they want to hang a banner they can let us know. Otherwise we will tel them to move along," he said.

Mr Owen could not comment on the exact number of police officers who would be patrolling the event.

"There will be more than a sufficient police force out," he said.

"We want to make sure our police officers, spectators and protestors are safe."

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