20 June 2010

It took 30 policeman working a total of 161 hours to look after pop sensation Justin Bieber during his day-long New Zealand visit.

The resources were used for the 16-year-old Canadian heart-throb's visit on April 27 and 28.

He came to New Zealand to perform at Karaka's Academic Colleges Group Strathallan College which won the concert through a radio station promotion.

Security was beefed up in New Zealand after excited fans caused chaotic scenes in Sydney which prompted police to cancel his show at the Circular Quay.

Information released to the Herald under the Official Information Act revealed 12 police officers were at Auckland International Airport - for six hours each - for his arrival, working a total of 71 hours.

Bieber, who had his own bodyguards, faced 500 screaming girls at the gates. One snatched his hat and another knocked over his mother, which he later expressed his annoyance about via the internet.

The airport also provided extra security.

The acting district commander of Auckland police, Chief Inspector John Palmer, said police did not "provide a security protection operation.

Rather, they attended venues "to keep the peace and provide crowd control responses in the normal operating manner".

Two police staff made frequent "drive-by visits" of the Langham Hotel, where the teenager stayed, working a total of five hours between them.

The next day four police staff were stationed at Strathallan School for three hours each.

When Bieber left another 12 police officers were at the airport for six hours each.

Also at the school were four St John ambulance volunteers and one paid staffer, but only one female student had to be treated - she grazed her knee when she fell over while running to the auditorium for the concert.

Back-up frontline staff were also on standby and three local ambulance stations were notified in case additional resources were required.

Two ambulances and a "rapid response" 4WD vehicle were at the school.

Two of the volunteers were stationed outside the gate to assist any non-students who tried to gatecrash the concert while the other two were inside the school's auditorium for the concert and the other staffer floated between them, liaising with police and school staff.

Garth McVicar of the Sensible Sentencing Trust said that over the years several victims had had trouble getting police to respond when they had reported a crime so the police decision to help with crowd control for Bieber's visit was shocking.

"There seems to be a huge lack of resources, lack of man-power to actually react to real crime.

"It just appalls me. Shouldn't these pop stars be organising their own security at their own cost? It shouldn't be a cost that the taxpayer's paying for. The police are a crime-fighting agency and that's what they should be limiting their resources to."

Bieber-sitting:

* Auckland International Airport (arrival): 12 police officers, 72 hours

* Langham Hotel: 2 police officers, 5 hours

* Strathallan school: 4 police officers, 12 hours (plus five ambulance staff)

* Auckland International Airport (departure): 12 police officers, 72 hours

TOTAL: 30 staff, 161 hours


-Watch everything that went on during JB's visit to Auckland here


NZ HERALD



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1 Comments

Anonymous said... [Reply]

Wow. its insane that he needs so much security. but it really isnt his fault that they doesnt have as many as they need..

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