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  1. Terrapinzflyer
    Two held over 18,000 ecstasy pills find
    Police action stuns bystanders

    Over 18,000 ecstasy pills were found in a cardboard box in a parking area next to Luxol grounds, in Pembroke, less than 24 hours after two men were caught and arrested in connection with a drug deal.

    The drugs were found at about 1 p.m. in a cardboard vegetable box, indicating it contained green bell peppers. The box was in a crumpled paper bag and hidden in a trench close to an abandoned and disused building formerly known as Raffles disco.

    The pills were wrapped in small packages, police sources said.

    Barely 24 hours earlier, the police tried to stop a drug deal that was about to take place there. One suspect escaped during the police operation and shots were fired, leaving witnesses in shock.

    Two men, from Żebbuġ and Ħamrun, were arrested in connection with the drug find. One was arrested on Monday afternoon at about 4.30 and the second was arrested yesterday morning. They are expected to be arraigned this week.

    The police were tipped off that a drug deal was about to take place in the afternoon in the parking area next to the Luxol Sports Complex. They sent about 10 plainclothes policemen in four unmarked cars. About 10 minutes later, two men in two separate cars drove into the grounds and parked.
    Almost immediately, the two cars were surrounded by the police.

    One man was blocked and handcuffed but the other one tried to escape and even rammed two police cars. His car also crashed into a police van partially blocking the ramp leading to the main road.

    In an attempt to stop the man getting away, officers were "forced" to fire at the vehicle's tyres, the police said.

    Bystanders later recounted how they were shocked when they heard shots being fired, adding they were surprised no one got hurt.

    The shots were fired a short distance away from a group of teenagers who were waiting to be picked up for training. Their waterpolo coach, Mark Galea Pace, said it was a miracle a tragedy did not take place.

    "I was shocked. The police fired in a public area and someone could have got hurt," he said.

    The operation was planned and the least the police could have done was ask people to move away from the area, Mr Galea Pace said. "All they had to do was tell the kids to move out of the way. They had all the time in the world to do so but they didn't."

    He also pointed out that a truck was selling gas cylinders close by. "Imagine if a bullet ricocheted and hit one of the children or a cylinder," he said.
    Mr Galea Pace was also upset at the way the police acted. "When I went to speak to the police afterwards to tell them off for their careless behaviour, they held it against me. One of the parents even went to make a formal complaint."


    Juan Ameen
    Wednesday, 13th January 2010
    http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20100113/local/two-held-over-18-000-ecstasy-pills-find

Comments

  1. akack2
    Maltese are very anti drugs,no sex shops there,no head shops-very Catholic country.Attempts to open head shops there have been unnsuccesful but Mephedrone is becoming popular.

    Coke is bad quality SWIM was told and costs quite a bit so it was inevitable.Cannabis is also very hard to find SWIM was told.A similiar place to Ireland in many ways but smaller and so more difficult to penetrate local authorities.
  2. chrisjames13
    More Trigger happy cops with no regard for civilian safety or even teenagers for that matter. What pieces of garbage. All over some frigging X pills. Is killing some innocent teenagers worth getting your big bust reckless cops?
  3. Terrapinzflyer
    @CJ
    And these guys bear no part of the blame? And put no lives at risk? And honestly, in such a situation I can't really blame the cops for firing- its an almost natural reaction to that sort of situation.

    And yes, the drug laws may be unjust, but that doesn't absolve one from acting responsibly.
  4. chrisjames13
    The most common technique used by law enforcement is to lay down spike strips to terminate vehicle pursuits. Losing innocent lives is still not worth it no matter how much of a crack shot these cops think they are. I do blame them for firing because there were other alternatives. They were obviously showboating.

    'The shots were fired a short distance away from a group of teenagers who were waiting to be picked up for training. Their waterpolo coach, Mark Galea Pace, said it was a miracle a tragedy did not take place.

    "I was shocked. The police fired in a public area and someone could have got hurt," he said.

    The operation was planned and the least the police could have done was ask people to move away from the area, Mr Galea Pace said. "All they had to do was tell the kids to move out of the way. They had all the time in the world to do so but they didn't."'
  5. Terrapinzflyer
    This is not true. The most common ways of ending a pursuit are blocking the path with police vehicles and ramming the fleeing vehicle with police vehicles. Spike strips see relatively little use as they require being able to deploy them well in advance of the fleeing vehicle, clearing the road of other vehicles, and having a route where the fleeing vehicle can not turn off to avoid them. All 3 methods, as well as high speed chases also pose risks to both life and property.

    And I would disagree they were "showboating". After the fleeing vehicle rammed police vehicles its obvious it was a high tension/adrenalin situation. If anyone was "Showboating" it was the reporter.

    Ultimately, it will be up to a board of some sort to hash out whether they acted properly, but putting myself in their shoes, I doubt I would have acted differently.
  6. chrisjames13
    The operation was planned ahead of time; obviously the police botched it and it could have cost civilian lives. The spike strips could have been set up in advance considering this operation was pre-planned, so there wouldn't have been any escape route for them; henceforth the cops wouldn't have had to be so gun ho. Also, it seems they already tried to blockade the exits out which is why the suspect was ramming them in the first place attempting to escape. The police screwed up in the first place by allowing this chaotic situation to take place, the police did not do their homework, plain and simple, and had no regard for civilian lives with not even an inkling of attempting to clear out the civilians. According to witnesses, the police had plenty of time to clear out the civilians before opening fire. It is plain and simple poor policing and thank god that no more innocents got hurt by trigger happy cops. If one of those teenagers were your children would you want police opening fire in their direct vicinity? I don't think so! If so you shouldn't be a parent. The witnesses even said it was a miracle that a tragedy didn't occur and innocent people killed by overzealous police officers.

    "Police officers are not soldiers but peace officers, whose duty is to protect human life. We've lost sight of the basic mission of police, which is to protect human life, not make drug arrests. When we set priorities and they conflict, protection of human life should take precedent, not the desire to seize drugs."
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