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V Sign To Drugs

by msecadm4921

Revellers are being warned not to take drugs to this year’s V Festival at Weston Park in Staffordshire, or they will face court action.

A condition of entry to the festival means that all festival-goers must allow themselves to be searched by police or security staff. Police, using drugs dogs, and stewards will be searching people as they enter the site from 21 to 24 August.<br><br>Chief Inspector Vera Bloor, from the tactical support department, said: “Drugs aren’t welcome at V. If you take them, or deal in them, we’ll catch you and prosecute you.”<br><br>Anyone found in possession of drugs will be arrested. They will have to provide a DNA sample and have their fingerprints taken which will be kept on the police national database. A mobile drugs laboratory and a laptop drugs-identifying machine will help officers quickly establish the type of substances seized and offenders could then be put before the next available court.<br><br>“We work closely with the organisers to ensure that the event is a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. It is renowned for being one of the safest in this country and we will continue to make it even safer for festival-goers and members of the local community,” added Ch Insp Bloor.<br><br>Police nationally have recovered fake drugs at concerts and found plaster-of-paris pills being sold as ecstasy and a drug called chloroquine, used to treat malaria, being sold as cocaine.<br><br>“Obviously these fake drugs could be extremely harmful and even life-threatening. Anyone caught with fake drugs will risk arrest, being put before a court and could face a prison sentence,” warns Ch Insp Bloor.<br><br>“It is also important for people entering or leaving the site to remember that driving under the influence of drink or drugs puts lives at risk. Mistakenly, people think that if they have been asleep, they will be safe to drive.<br><br>“Drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs not only put themselves at risk but also their passengers and other road users.<br><br>“Officers this year will be breathalysing anyone suspected of drink driving when leaving the site.”

Major acts including The Killers, Elbow, Oasis and Snow Patrol will take the stage at Weston Park on 22 and 23 August. There will be 90,000 people at the festival each day – including 85,000 ticket holders and 75,000 campers.

As in previous years, a premises licence has been granted by the local authority to cover the site from 21 to 24 August. This means anyone involved in violence, disorder or any other crime faces immediate ejection along with criminal prosecution.

Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras, which scan car registration numbers, will be used to weed out known offenders or people linked to crime as they enter the site, which will also be covered by extensive Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) coverage.

Chief Inspector Pete Owen, one of the event commanders, said: ”Recorded crime at V Festival again fell last year along with the number of arrests.

“V has built a national reputation for its low-crime, trouble-free atmosphere and is rightly regarded as one of the safest festivals in the UK. A robust policing plan is drawn up months before the event as part of detailed organisational work with the promoters.

“We want to reassure local residents that we are doing everything we can to minimise disruption and tackle anyone travelling to the area with plans to commit crime.”

Dawn Woodhouse, V Festival organiser, added: “We’re proud to be one of the safest festivals around and it’s our mission to make the event as safe as possible for everyone who attends. The excellent work done by Staffordshire Police means that our goal is, again, well within reach.”

There will be a significant uniformed police presence at Weston Park, along with undercover officers.

Anyone who witnesses crime at the festival can ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or text the information to 07929 30 20 10, prefixing their message with “vfest”.

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