TOP COP ACTS TO REDRAW – Wednesday March 27 2013

– Ken Lay is not the sort who likes to make a big noise. When he became Chief Commissioner in 2011 his aim was to go about his business as quietly as possible, avoiding the controversy that has dogged the office in recent years.
So his decision to go public with claims some police are using performance-enhancing drugs and have criminal links to outlaw bikies shows that he sees it as a huge problem.
There has been an unsuccessful attempt to infiltrate the anti-bikie Echo Taskforce and now a separate Taskforce, codenamed Eagle, has been set up to coordinate at least seven investigations into unexplained links between bikies and police.
Lay was given a briefing late last year that police caught in the body-image culture were visiting gyms frequented by bikies an suspected of being centres for the distribution of steroid-like drugs.
The consequences are frightening. Many of these drugs not only affect the body but also alter the mind, with “roid rage” being a dangerous consequence.
A footballer on the gear is a cheat. A policeman using the same product is a potential killer.
What police aren’t saying is they are concerned about some of their front-line units – the ones used for major confrontations and whose members have to decide the level of force required in a split-second.
There are others who work in stations who have left the police academy as skinny kids and in a suspiciously short time have bodybuilder physiques. And then Lay had to struggle with a generation gap. Many younger police are embracing body art, getting themselves full-sleeve and body tattoos.
Senior police don’t like it, but have to live with it. But it’s not just a fashion argument, as investigations show some police have been going to tattoo parlours controlled by bikie gangs. And the fear is that while sitting in a chair getting inked up, young officers may (in many cases inadvertently) give away good mail on confidential investigations.
Lay plans to remind all police, from recruits to senior officers, of the dangers being groomed by bikies who are using an age-old method known as the “Three Cs”: cultivate, compromise, corrupt.
The Echo Taskforce has found the bikie problem is much worse than previously imagined – with links to nightclub security, strip clubs, heavy haulage, trucking, debt collecting and illicit drugs.
For years police have ignored bikies. Now Lay is determined to take them on.
And if that makes a big mouse, so be it – John Silvester


About Jumpin' Jack Cash
This entry was posted in Corruption and Misconduct, Drug Possession & Use, Drug Trafficking, Manufacturing and Dealing, Organised Crime, Police Culture and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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