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Image for New Stats From South Australia Show 85% Of Punters Sniffed By Drug Dogs Were Totally CleanSniffer Dogs At Parklife Music Festival Sydney, 2010 / Photo: Don Arnold/Getty Images

New Stats From South Australia Show 85% Of Punters Sniffed By Drug Dogs Were Totally Clean

Written by Emmy Mack on July 5, 2018

More damning evidence is being heaped on Aussie cops’ controversial sniffer dog policies, with new statistics out of SA showing that the po-po’s pooches have been getting it wrong more than 85% of the time.

As the ABC reports, figures from South Australia Police show that, during the period of 2016-2017, sniffer doggos fingered (proverbially) 2,366 punters for potential drug possession, but subsequent searches only turned up actual drugs in 348 of those cases, amounting to a strike rate of less than 15% for the five-o’s furry friends.

The stats are pretty alarming when you consider NSW Police’s highly contentious new policy of ousting any punter who arouses the attention of one of their canine’s snoots, regardless of whether or not subsequent searches actually uncover drugs.

RMIT criminologist Peta Malins definitely smells a rat, telling the ABC that the low return on the positive indications from the drug-sniffing borkers-in-blue raises serious questions about the legal grounds for police searches.

“To me that does not constitute the grounds for a search,” the good doctor argues.

“These searches operate outside of court scrutiny because most people are searched and not found with drugs so it doesn’t get tested in court and the people found with drugs are often given cautions or diversions so that doesn’t get tested either.

“There’s no real judicial oversight to determine whether what is going on is fair and that is part of the problem.”

Last month in NSW, 150 people were turfed from a Sydney music festival despite not being found to have any drugs on them, as a result of the state cops’ controversial new sniffer dog policy.

It really pissed off the NSW Greens and their ‘Sniff Off’ collective, who are now vowing to take the police to court for “abuse of powers”.

Will keep you posted with any updates.

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