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70 drug arrests at Ally Pally rave

PUBLISHED: 12:16 08 April 2010 | UPDATED: 16:53 07 September 2010

MORE than 70 people were arrested in one evening as part of a drugs crackdown at a dance music event at Alexandra Palace over the bank holiday weekend. Police made a total of 73 arrests at Tranz-mission 2010 on Saturday night – nine for pos

Rhiannon Evans

MORE than 70 people were arrested in one evening as part of a drugs crackdown at a dance music event at Alexandra Palace over the bank holiday weekend.

Police made a total of 73 arrests at Tranz-mission 2010 on Saturday night - nine for possession with intent to supply various classes of drugs and 61 for possession of Class A drugs.

A total of 21 cannabis seizures were also made - dealt with by way of a warning or arrests where clubbers were also in possession of a Class A drug.

Among the 4,500 revellers to attend, one person was arrested for possession of an offensive weapon and another for a breach of the peace. There was also an arrest for a breach of a community order.

The event, by promoters Slammin Vinyl, is billed as the capital's largest indoor dance music event and took place over five rooms inside the palace from 8pm on Saturday until 6am on Sunday morning.

Plans to police the evening began immediately after last year's event, which was also held at the palace.

As part of the operation the event promoter paid for police and sniffer dogs to be present, while Alexandra Palace provided drug amnesty bins and signs telling people not to bring drugs into the event.

Before they were admitted everyone was searched by a police team including local officers, a Territorial Support Group, the Metropolitan Special Constabulary and drugs search dogs.

Grant Smith, director of Slammin Vinyl, said the number of arrests was high compared to other events they normally stage.

"Obviously this was a very proactive operation - this is not something we are used to in any way," he said.

"We stage 15 or 16 events across the country, and we always ask for a police presence to be there - on this occasion it was considerably more than usual."

A spokeswoman for Alexandra Palace added: "We, the event promoter and police went to great lengths to prevent drugs from being present at what was otherwise a hugely successful event, thoroughly enjoyed by the 4,500 young people who attended - there were no reports of trouble or violence and no complaints about noise.

"We try to stage events for all age groups - from music events like Tranz-mission or the Jay-Z concert held last year, to the massive bank holiday picnic we are hosting on May 31 as part of National Family Week.

"As Tranz-mission took place through the night, it would not have impacted on the families we attract to events or to use our facilities at other times of day."

Chief Inspector Pete Dickson, in charge of policing, said: "A great deal of planning went into policing the event and we worked closely with the event organisers to ensure that those attending could do so safely.

"We anticipated a large number of drugs related arrests and had suitable facilities in place to deal with them and to minimise disruption.

"Proactive police activity in the grounds of Alexandra Palace ensured that people could enjoy themselves safely."

There was only one other reported crime at the event - the theft of a bag from a cloakroom.


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