• Spain edition
 
Spanish police tweet drug smuggling tips
"It's better if you've already rolled them and hide them somewhere where the sniffer dogs don't detect them," Spain's National Police Force tweeted. File Photo: Policia Nacional

Spanish police tweet drug smuggling tips

Published: 22 Jan 2014 11:33 GMT+01:00
Updated: 22 Jan 2014 11:33 GMT+01:00

Policia Nacional, as they are known in Spain, responded to a tweet by culture journal Jotdown Magazine in which they asked "If you're travelling abroad (to EU countries) and you’re carrying four joints, is it better to have them on you or in the bag you check in?"

"It's better if you've already rolled them and hide them somewhere where the sniffer dogs don't detect them," Spain's National Police Force tweeted back.

They even provided a suitable place to hide them: "cigarette packet maybe?"

Even though the Policia Nacional's social media team rounded off the tweet by saying "you still risk a penalty for public consumption", the message caused a Twitter storm and won them even more followers.

Police soon removed the humorous 'advisory' messages and sent out a new tweet saying: "To avoid any confusion: possession and consumption of drugs in public places does result in fines."

But it's precisely this down-to-earth and friendly attitude on social media that has won Spain's National Police Force many new fans and led the country's media to applaud their innovative tactics.

Their light-hearted language and regular replies on Facebook and Twitter have proven key to engaging Spaniards of all ages in citizen crime fighting campaigns.

Recently, a murderer was arrested just 12 hours after the National Police Corps sent out a tweet with a photo and description of the suspect.

Their feed warns the public of new scams and enlists the help of Spaniards, tweeting requests for information about drug dealers and other criminals, to be sent anonymously to a police e-mail address.

Police say they arrested 300 suspected drug traffickers from January 2012 to June 2013 thanks to information provided by Twitter users in response to these appeals for help.

"We try not to be very boring or too institutional or else people lose interest," Carlos Fernández Guerra, the force's social media manager, told news agency AFP in 2013.

Alex Dunham (alex.dunham@thelocal.com)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
At last: Malaga metro up and running
Andalusia’s regional president Susana Díaz has promised to invest a further €138 million in the remaining construction costs. Photo: Juntainforma/Flickr

At last: Malaga metro up and running

Residents in the southern Spanish city had to wait nine long years to see the €800 million ($1 billion) underground system finally open its doors to the public on Wednesday. READ  

Spain pulls diplomatic staff out of Libya
Members of the Libyan army guarding the western gate of Tripoli in May. Photo: Mahmud Turkia/AFP

Spain pulls diplomatic staff out of Libya

Spain has temporarily evacuated all of its diplomatic staff from its embassy in Libya as the country's security crisis continues to worsen, the foreign affairs minister announced on Thursday. READ  

Santander profits jump nearly 40 percent
The president of Santander bank Emilio Botín. Photo: Pierre-Philippe Marcou/AFP

Santander profits jump nearly 40 percent

Santander, the eurozone's biggest bank by market value, said on Thursday its profits jumped by more than a third in the second quarter as its ratio of risky assets eased. READ  

Spanish climber dies on 'world's deadliest peak'
At 8,611 metres K2 is one of the most difficult peaks in the Himalayas, with around one in four climbers attempting the ascent dying in the process. Photo: Maria Ly

Spanish climber dies on 'world's deadliest peak'

A Spanish climber has died while taking on the ascent of the Himalayan mountain K2, also known as the Savage Mountain because of its extreme difficulty. READ  

513 trains cancelled in national rail strike
Workers with Spain's national railway company Renfe and rail infrastructure company Adif have called the two-day strike to protest against a lack of personnel. Photo: Dariusz Sieczkowski

513 trains cancelled in national rail strike

Over 500 trains have been cancelled as part of a two-day strike on Thursday and Friday, with remaining services limited. READ  

Ex-king's paternity suit lands in Supreme Court
Spanish king Juan Carlos in St Tropez in 1959. Photo: AFP

Ex-king's paternity suit lands in Supreme Court

A paternity suit lodged by a waiter against Spanish King Juan Carlos has been handed into the country's Supreme Court, in what is the first serious legal challenge for the former monarch since he abdicated in June. READ  

Pinterest gobbles up hot Barcelona start-up
Icebergs services will be discontinued on the first of September, and the startup's founders will go to work for Pinterest. Screen grab: Pininterest/YouTube

Pinterest gobbles up hot Barcelona start-up

Online bulletin-board service Pinterest on Wednesday announced it was buying out Spanish start-up Icebergs, specializing in helping creative people collaborate on projects. READ  

Video
Orlando Bloom 'punches' Justin Bieber in Ibiza
Some news sources claim there was previous ‘beef’ between the two caused by Bieber's close friendship with the British heartthrob’s ex Miranda Kerr. Photo: AFP

Orlando Bloom 'punches' Justin Bieber in Ibiza

Hollywood star Orlando Bloom has reportedly attempted to punch pop singer Justin Bieber during a confrontation in a restaurant in the Spanish holiday island of Ibiza. READ  

The Local List
Top 10 characters you'll meet in Spain's hostels
Photo: Afik Berlin/Flickr

Top 10 characters you'll meet in Spain's hostels

Spain's hostels are packed with weird and wacky characters. From the so-called 'brag packers' to the hen night weekenders, The Local's Cécilia Brès rounds up the best of the guests from her own experiences working at a Madrid hostel. READ  

Gibraltar relations
Gibraltar slams Spain's plan to end border chaos
Twelve barcode readers and turnstiles will replace the border guard checking pedestrians’ IDs, speeding up the process considerably. Photo: Marcos Moreno/AFP

Gibraltar slams Spain's plan to end border chaos

Spain has followed EU recommendations on limiting traffic jams and queues at its border with Gibraltar by announcing it will introduce a pass system for workers commuting from either side. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
What's On
What's on in Spain: August 2014
Property
Spanish house prices to start climbing in 2016: S&P
National
'We're going to occupy Gibraltar': radical union
National
Magaluf 'oral sex' bar shut down
What's On
What's on in Spain: August 2014
Politics
Merkel snubs Catalonia's independence plans
International
Ancient graffiti proves Spain's Irish links
National
Underwater nightmare: man trapped for 20 hours in cave
What's On
Top Ten: Summer music festivals in Spain 2014
National
Risky business: Man snaps selfie during Running of the Bulls
International
Finland to house sub-zero Sagrada Familia
National
Scorcher: Summer's first heatwave hits Spain
Society
Spanish naturist paradise bans nudity by mistake
National
Airbnb fined €30,000 over 'illegal' apartments
National
VIDEO: Landing aborted in Barcelona 'near miss'
Culture
Top 10 Spanish locations to film Game of Thrones
Society
VIDEO: Man arrested after racist attack on Barcelona Metro
Culture
Sheikh to turn Barcelona bullring into mega-mosque
Culture
Spanish top model swaps catwalk for nunnery
Travel
Granada, not Grenada! Airline sued over mix-up
Culture
IN PICTURES: Spain's baby jumping festival
National
King Felipe of Spain: his life in pictures
National
Spanish pilots ordered to speak only English
Sponsored Article
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

1,653
jobs available