5 Aug 2010

Tonga sets up airport police team to fight transnational crime

3:37 pm on 5 August 2010

The Police Commander in Tonga says a new community and airport police centre at Fua'amotu International Airport will help combat drug trafficking, people smuggling and other transnational crimes.

The initiative has been launched with the aim of better policing of the airport and strengthening border controls, making it harder for people to flout the law.

Commander Chris Kelley says the centre will be run by five police officers and four staff from the Drug Dogs Section of the airport.

"They're there to support the primary agencies of immigration, customs, quarantine, health, etc. But also you know we have particular interests. We have an intelligence officer also attached to the airport policing, so that we can keep an eye on people who are of interest to us coming and going within the region."

Chris Kelley says the project will be monitored, with the aim of achieving sustained results in reducing transnational crime.