Police taunted over Nimbin raid
CONFLICTING views on the police treatment of people in the Nimbin community were tested during a drug operation in the town on Friday.
The Northern Star trailed a team of nine police officers and two drug detection dogs during a sweep of Nimbin.
The police spent 30 minutes in the main street, walking the drug detection dogs through the town and taking the details of those who had a positive reaction to the dogs.
People were asked to empty their pockets if they gave a positive detection, including a woman with a pram who was questioned and the pockets of the pram searched.
Police also patrolled the infamous Laneway – a hot spot for drug dealing – where they seized several bags of marijuana and smoking materials from under buildings.
The police recovered the bags of contraband under a sign that read ‘pot dealers please stay outside.’
The officers were shadowed by a vocal group of 20 people who were yelling about injustice and for police to ‘get a real job’.
From what The Northern Star saw, the police were straight forward, calm and relatively polite in their dealings with the public.
They ignored the condemnations from fired-uponlookers, only once telling a woman to ‘shut up’ – which she did.
No fines were issued, only details recorded.
Officials from theDepartment of Immigration accompanied the police.
The Nimbin Polite Force – created in reaction to a police raid at Nimbin in 2008 – was also in tow filming the operation.
Cries of heavy-handedness and aggressive police behaviour often pour out of the town each time a high-visibility operation hits Nimbin
This time was no different.
“It feels like we are under siege,” HEMP Embassy president Michael Balderstone said.
“There were lots of reports of police being very aggressive. It’s an incredible waste of taxpayers’ dollars.
“We could at least sit down and talk about it. ‘A local solution to local problems’, as Kristina Keneally said.”