Customs officers get X-ray machines for down under searches
Aussie Doctors relieved of drug-sniffing duties
Aussie customs officers are to get right under the skin of visitors to the Lucky Country with body scanners that will allow them to peruse suspected smugglers' internals without the need for a doctor's expertise.
Ingesting drug-filled condoms and the like has become a favourite quick and dirty method for smugglers to evade customs.
Australia's jumpy border police are frustrated at having to take suspected smugglers to hospitals so that Doctors can perform X-rays to ensure the ultimate internal search.
So the Federal Parliament is considering legislation that will give customs officers body scanners that allow them to check suspects' insides without anyone having to get their hands dirty.
A trial will kick off later this year, with suspects being given the option of either the customs quickie scan, or the traditional hospital, waiting room, gown variety. Pregnant women, the mentally impaired and under-18s are all exempt.
Home Affairs minister Brendan O'Connor told the Herald Sun the new system would help all travellers, as it would "quickly exonerate the innocent and ensure a minimum of delay for legitimate travellers".
Arguably a more focused screening policy might be better and cheaper. Last year, 200 people were taken to hospital for internal searches, the Herald Sun reports. Of those, just 50 were found to have drugs in their bodies.
It's not clear what else they might have found though. Crims have pushing the envelope of what might be kept in the ultimate hurt locker. Mobile phones are current favourite, and one Florida lag recently nabbed with a full prison survival kit including drugs stash, syringe, cigarette and matches and a number of receipts in his lower compartment. ®
"would quickly exonerate the innocent" = "would quickly give the innocent a potentially dangerous radiation dose".
Excuse me for asking...
...but don't you have to be a trained radiographer to deliver doses of X-rays?
It's been a long time since just anyone was allowed to zap people with radiation - pretty much since they stopped X-raying peoples' feet for correct shoe sizes.
choose the hospital
trained staff hopefully.
Plus, they tend to not do anything to harm the patient.
plus, there is a chance of the xray revealing a so far undetected medical condition.
a customs official on the other hand, wouldn't think twice before cranking the radiation exposure dial all the way upto the "are you nuts?" setting just to try and detect something he/she "suspects" you could be smuggling.
another thing, would the ladies be offered a pregnancy test just to make sure they're not pregnant at the time? if not, could they sue the fuckwits for imposing an xray?