By Steve Elliott
Local residents in Nimbin, New South Wales, Australia were outraged on Thursday at a town-wide marijuana raid in which drug-detecting dogs searched people for marijuana.
A forensics van was reportedly on hand to perform on-the-spot drug testing, and a number of local businesses were raided, reports Taylor Auerbach at the Daily Telegraph.
Nimbin, a counterculture hippie haven, is still reeling from a devastating fire last month that destroyed four of the town's most historic buildings; locals were very upset with the huge police presence.
"Some people are absolutely disgusted, some people think it's a joke, some people think it's an intrusion," said Mac McMahon of the Nimbin Hemp Embassy. "They're an unwelcome presence in the small community. It's over the top."
"They seem to be carting off tourists and locals who buy a little bit of marijuana off the street," one local resident said.
The raids were part of "Operation Oleary," which police claimed they established "following concerns from the local community." More than 70 police were involved in the raids, with at least eight people being arrested.
Cops confiscated two kilograms of cannabis following raids at a cafe and a bookstore. One police spokesman denied they were performing on-the-spot drug tests.