By ANDREW ALPHONSE
LAW and order problems have improved in Tari, Southern Highlands province,due to the presence of a police mobile unit from Enga province.
The MS11 squad was deployed to Tari on Feb 10 to assist the Tari-based MS09 unit to control tribal fights, armed hold-ups, violence related to alcohol and drug abuse, murder and other lawlessness in the area that raised security concerns about the PNG LNG project.
Since their deployment, the MS11 unit have arrested offenders and carried out awareness campaigns on the general law and order issues in Tari and Hela.
Led by MS11 squad commander Insp Timothy Mataro, the two mobile squad units took to the streets of Tari town on foot, conducting body searches on people suspected of carrying offensive weapons and illicit goods in town last Friday.
They also checked vehicles for road worthiness.
They launched public awareness, informing people on the importance of keeping law and order with the coming LNG project and the new Hela province.
Insp Mataro said since their deployment to Tari, they had arrested and charged six people for trespassing the unfenced Tari aerodrome.
He said four of the suspects were cautioned and released at Tari police station while two appeared before the Mendi district court last week.
The two were found guilty and are out on good behaviour bond for six months.
Insp Mataro said the squad also arrested an attempted murder suspect last week at Hoiyebia village, who is now behind bars at Tari police station.
Insp Mataro said during their one-month presence in Tari, they had made nine arrests of youths for various offences including being in possession of dangerous drugs (marijuana), illegal sale of alcohol and in possession of live ammunition among others.
Insp Mataro said the tribal fight at Waralo in Tari had also stopped while both warring tribes were negotiating for peace.
He said last week, the squad impounded 112 cartons of SP beer and arrested the owner for illegal sale of beer.
The Mendi district court found the suspect, Dickson Etape of Hiwanda village in Tari, guilty and forfeited the 112 cartons to the State.