NATION

Police Take to the Skies

The Fiji Police Force has taken its war on drugs to the skies to complement the deploy­ment of resources on the ground. Following the raid in Kadavu, which resulted in
22 Jan 2018 11:00
Police Take to the Skies
ACP Rusiate Tudravu during the aerial surveillance ops over Kadavu on January 20, 2018. Photo: Police Media Cell

The Fiji Police Force has taken its war on drugs to the skies to complement the deploy­ment of resources on the ground.

Following the raid in Kadavu, which resulted in the seizure of more than one tonne of marijuana, Police Chief of Operations, Assis­tant Commissioner of Police Rusi­ate Tudravu, yesterday launched what will now be a regular compo­nent of their operations on drugs.

“The use of a helicopter to con­duct aerial surveillance is in line with the Commissioner’s intent which we are putting into action as the operation on drugs was mainly confined to the traditional form of using manpower on foot to search for the farms and this took a lot of time and effort,” Mr Tudravu said.

He was accompanied by Sergeant Moape Tau, who is based at the Kadavu Police Station, to conduct aerial surveillance and confirm the existence of a number of farms based on information gathered.

“This is the first time that we would like to complement the man­power on the ground together with the intelligence and the use of a helicopter to view the farms and the land mass. We have sighted a few farms which our officers will be deployed to without having to search through the rugged terrain for hours”.

Responding to critics who have de­scribed the war on drugs as a waste of time and resources as well as repeated calls to legalise the culti­vation of marijuana, Mr Tudravu said it was the Force’s role to en­sure everyone’s safety.

“You cannot say that it is a waste of money because this is the life of a person and the Fiji Police Force exists to provide safety and secu­rity of the people and property and that is why money is given for op­erations such as this,” he said.

“Why do some people insist on legalising drugs when the impact is known in Fiji. Innocent people have fallen victims to murder and rape because the perpetrator was high on drugs.”

Mr Tudravu said Kadavu was cho­sen to pilot the new phase of the drug operations because of the re­cent find.

“The drugs seized in Kadavu this past week superseded any other find and taking into account the rugged terrain, where it is hard to find the farms but with the use of a helicopter we will save a lot of time,” he said.

“For those involved in the culti­vation of marijuana, don’t try to undermine how far we are willing to go to get to you. We will be able to deploy resources on the ground, on the water and in the air to show that we are serious about the war on drugs.

Source: Police Media Cell

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